“”Surely I am coming soon.” Amen. Come, Lord Jesus!”
Last night I sat and watched on a hill, staring toward the east. The sun was setting in the west. I had full view of the sky at dusk. There were clouds on the horizon before me. I figured it would appear above those clouds. I just knew it would be soon. The evening news reminded me of the event. There I sat waiting in the cooling air. When would it come? Someone sitting beside me had their smart phone out watching the countdown. Then it started, “Ten, nine, eight, seven, six, five, four, three, two, one, liftoff!” Someone said the rocket was moving, but then someone else said it didn’t look right. I watched the sky. Where is it? From where I sat I could not miss the NASA Antares rocket racing toward a supply rendezvous with the International Space Station. The rocket body would not be visible from 70 miles away but the exhaust plume would be remarkable. Nothing obstructed my view of the sky high above Wallops Island, Virginia. But the rocket did not come. I soon found out the rocket had exploded seconds after liftoff. I can only imagine the way the ISS astronauts must feel today. Perhaps they too may wonder, “When?”
The closing words of Revelation; therefore, the closing words of the Bible begin with, “Come, Lord Jesus!” To be followed by the last words of the Bible, “The grace of the Lord Jesus be with all. Amen.” For me this closing prayer is comforting. I hear the assurance that until Christ comes we will experience the grace of Jesus Christ. What does that mean? For me it means that until Christ comes we will be under the favor of Christ. We followers of Christ have not been abandoned. We will have the provision of the Holy Spirit.
In the official statements of NASA hours after the Antares rocket failure they assured the public that there are four to six months of provisions on ISS. The good news is that the astronaut crew has plenty of food and water, and a lot of work to do. The crew won’t be staring out the window towards earth waiting for another rocket. NASA also made public the rocket schedule over the next two months, through December. Two more rockets are to go to ISS. In other words, NASA will come to ISS.
As Christians await the return of Christ we too have not been abandoned. Christ has provided in the Holy Spirit. This is Good News since we’ve still got a lot of work to do. So, let’s stay busy. As I learned, it does no good to just sit and watch.
 Revelation 22:20 (NRSV)
 John 14:15-17 (various translations)