Last Saturday was a wonderful day. For the first time in about 8 months we were able to see the Swindon branch of our family, daughter, son-in-law and grandchildren. Having been apart for so long the emotions flowed as we looked at our grandchildren to see the difference in them, especially our 4 year old grandson who has grown so much.
Reunions are very special. Just look at Long Lost Family on TV to see relatives who have been apart for years, the joy they experience and the ending of years of pain and sense of loss. On rare occasions people from North Korea are able to see their South Korean relatives, who they may last have seen over 50 years ago. Imagine how they must feel when they embrace?
Christians are given a sense of wonderful expectation in the Bible. Are you someone, like me, who has lost a child in infancy? Is there any pain worse, I wonder? It happened to King David in the Bible, but he uttered some wonderful words about the son he’d lost. He said, “I will go to him, but he will not return to me.” (1) That’s my belief. I know because of my faith in Jesus Christ that one day I will see my child again, and what a joy that will be.
What about other relatives that we miss dreadfully? In a wonderful passage of the Bible, talking about when Jesus will return, it says, “For we believe that Jesus died and rose again, and so we believe that God will bring with Jesus those who have fallen asleep in him. According to the Lord’s word, we tell you that we who are still alive, who are left until the coming of the Lord, will certainly not precede those who have fallen asleep. For the Lord himself will come down from heaven, with a loud command, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet call of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first. After that, we who are still alive and are left will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And so we will be with the Lord forever. Therefore encourage one another with these words.” (2) Our Christian relatives who have died will one day join with us. We will be together, and we will be forever with the Lord.
Jesus had a wonderful reunion that’s not recorded in the Bible. He had left his Father in heaven when he came to earth to die on the cross. After his death and resurrection Mary Magdalene saw him and wanted to hold him, but Jesus said, “Do not hold on to me, for I have not yet ascended to the Father.” (3) Shortly afterwards Jesus appeared to his disciples, and this time he said, “Look at my hands and my feet. It is I myself! Touch me and see.” (4) Mary wasn’t allowed to touch but the disciples were encouraged to do so. In the time between meeting Mary and the disciples Jesus must have ascended to see his Father, and how poignant must their reunion have been. While on the cross, God the Father had to turn away from his Son Jesus, because of our sins. We will never understand the pain both Father and Son suffered, but we can marvel that it was for us, and we can only guess at the joy they felt as they were together again.
Christians across the world are longing for a reunion with Jesus. It’s perhaps a strange word to use because we’ve never met him face to face, but we certainly know him. When we trusted in his saving death at Calvary Jesus became our Saviour, and we began a relationship with him that will go on for eternity. When he returns, or when we die, whichever comes first, we will go to be with Jesus and we will see him. We will gaze on the One who gave up his life for us and we will worship him. What else could we do?
Friend, I would love for you to enjoy the same experience. Living for ever with Jesus, seeing Christian loved ones who we have been separated from, it’s such an exciting prospect and it can be yours if you simply trust in Jesus.
- 2 Samuel 12:23
- 1 Thessalonians 4:14-17
- John 20:17
- Luke 24:39