By Pam Hardenbrook
…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. 1 Thessalonians 4:16-17
As a young adult, my father met Jesus - and became a joyous, enthusiastic disciple. It was his fondest hope to be alive at Christ’s return. However, when Dad died in 2009, that desire wasn’t realized. After musing about this for several months, I came to realize that surely, Dad was not disappointed.
My reflections resulted in the following poem.
Throughout his life of faith on earth,
one longing he held dear:
“To see Christ coming in the clouds –
that trumpet sound to hear!”
Eyes keenly focused on the sky,
with yearning he gazed at the blue.
Would this be the day that the firmament rends,
and joyfully, Jesus steps through?
Ears expectant and eagerly open,
he’d anticipate Gabriel’s tune.
“May your ‘glorious appearing’ mark the end of my days.
Come, Lord Jesus; yes, please come soon!”
But early that morning he left us.
All was quiet; dozing near him we stayed.
No trumpet sounded to our ears, but to his –
was a reveille played?
Or the angel band – was it jamming,
rehearsing their song for That Day?
Maybe Gabriel tuning his trumpet
was the sound that called Daddy away?
But that last trumpet solo, he’ll hear it!
And the limbs of that great redwood tree
will shake as he jumps up to answer that call –
just imagine with me!
Alive on this earth or asleep when Christ comes –
where I’ll be, I really can’t say.
Dad would tell us, “Just watch and be ready,
For you may hear that trumpet today!”
Thank you, Lord, for your promise: that at Jesus’ return, I will reunite with my loved ones – and I will finally see you face to face. How these words comfort me! Give me watchful eyes and listening ears, and prepare my heart for my own reveille. Amen.