The end of all things is near. Therefore be clear minded and self-controlled so that you can pray. (1 Pet. 4:7)

SOME DAYS JUST DRAG ON AND ON. The pain won’t quit. The tough situation won’t end. The stress won’t go away. The clock stands still on an unfinished, difficult task. We think the tough days will never come to an end, but God says an end of all things will come—and it could be soon.

I was a bit concerned when I came home from grade school and my mom, who always met me at the school bus, was not home. I went through the house calling for her, but she was nowhere to be found. Then I panicked. Did Jesus come and take my mom but leave me behind? I experienced a few frantic minutes until Mom came home from the neighbors’. She had been nearer than I thought. Since then I do not live with the fear of the end but with anticipation of the future.

Because of my relationship with Jesus, knowledge that the end is near produces expectation, not fear. That awareness influences how I live. If the end could come today, I must not wait to do the things I should. I must seize opportunities, complete assignments, meet obligations. The bad things of this world will come to an end, and so will the opportunities to do good in the world. Be ready, because He is nearer than you think.

Joyfully seize the day.

Ken Heer was a pastor, community director, and author (A Good Start and Ancient Fire). He passed away prior to this publication.