April 5, 2023

Mark 13:14-27 (HCSB)
14 "When you see the abomination that causes desolation standing where it should not" (let the reader understand), "then those in Judea must flee to the mountains! 15 A man on the housetop must not come down or go in to get anything out of his house. 16 And a man in the field must not go back to get his clothes. 17 Woe to pregnant women and nursing mothers in those days! 18 Pray it won't happen in winter. 19 For those will be days of tribulation, the kind that hasn't been from the beginning of the world, which God created, until now and never will be again! 20 Unless the Lord limited those days, no one would survive. But He limited those days because of the elect, whom He chose.  21 "Then if anyone tells you, 'Look, here is the Messiah! Look-there!' do not believe it! 22 For false messiahs and false prophets will rise up and will perform signs and wonders to lead astray, if possible, the elect.  23 And you must watch! I have told you everything in advance.  24 "But in those days, after that tribulation: The sun will be darkened, and the moon will not shed its light;  25 the stars will be falling from the sky, and the celestial powers will be shaken. 26 Then they will see the Son of Man coming in clouds with great power and glory.  27 He will send out the angels and gather His elect from the four winds, from the end of the earth to the end of the sky.

Sarah Ricciardi
Did you catch when we are addressed in this passage? I LOVE when God’s Word references those of us living now, as done in verse 14, “let the reader understand”. That should remind us that we serve a trustworthy God—Alpha and Omega, Beginning and the End. Let’s not let the freaky descriptions blur our vision of God’s Truth. God loves us enough to share a glimpse at His plan and He loves us enough to hear our prayers. Why would Jesus command us to pray in verse 18 if our prayer had no impact on God, the Father? Prayer is powerful! Not just because God Almighty hears us, but also because of what prayer does to us. Prayer gives us eyes expectant to God at work. It guards against pride, keeping our focus on God’s doing and not my doing. Prayer guides us in relinquishing control to our Father. It’s a surrender to our Savior.

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