1 Thessalonians 4:13-18
We who are still alive and are left will be caught up together with them in the cloud to meet the Lord in the air (1 Thess. 4:17b).
At a moment of tremendous grief and loss as we waited to enter my mother's memorial service the pastor shared with our family the truth from God's Word. Separation was not God's design. One day soon, when Jesus returns, such separations from loved ones will be ended. That simple truth hit me that day in a way I had never grasped before. A peace began welling up to the surface of my being and I grabbed hold of the hope that Christ himself had planted. My life was hidden in a great hopeful expectancy beyond the sorrow-filled moments in front of me.
Paul exhorts us to keep these things before us as an encouragement. We already stand in a kingdom without end. We experience the already but not yet complete realization of this kingdom now. Soon, yes, soon, we will join those who have gone on ahead of us. What a gathering we will have!
The essence of true living is not the material things that we can see, but the invisible aspects chat we cannot see. According to Paul, 'These three remain: faith, hope and love'' (1 Corinthians 13:13).