He's Coming Back - Advent Story by Rob Neves
25 “And there will be strange events in the skies—signs in
the sun, moon, and stars. And down here on earth the nations will be
in turmoil, perplexed by the roaring seas and strange tides. 26 The courage of many people will falter because of the fearful
fate they see coming upon the earth, because the stability of the very
heavens will be broken up. 27 Then everyone
will see the Son of Man arrive on the clouds with power and great glory. 28 So when all these things begin to happen,
stand straight and look up, for your salvation is near!”
29 Then he gave them this illustration: “Notice the fig tree, or any other tree. 30 When the leaves come out, you know without being told that summer is near. 31 Just so, when you see the events I’ve described taking place, you can be sure that the Kingdom of God is near. 32 I assure you, this generation will not pass from the scene until all these events have taken place.
33 Heaven and earth will disappear, but my words will remain forever.
34 “Watch out! Don’t let me find you living in careless ease and drunkenness, and filled with the worries of this life. Don’t let that day catch you unaware, 35 as in a trap. For that day will come upon everyone living on the earth. 36 Keep a constant watch. And pray that, if possible, you may escape these horrors and stand before the Son of Man.”
He’s Coming Back
Ali sat in the back of the van looking for a sign that said “Pine Park Road.” She had been waiting for this family camping trip for a long time. She couldn’t wait to jump in the lake, go for a hike and especially eat some s’mores! S’mores were a special treat that no one could make quite like her father. Ali thought that her father was the all time grand champion, world famous king of s’more making. She could already imagine him slowly roasting the marshmallows, then putting the gooey treat in between two chocolate covered graham crackers. Ali’s mouth began to water.
“How much farther mom?” Ali asked
“Do you have the map your father made us?”
“It says we are almost there. We just need to see the sign that says Pine Park Road.”
“Oh, you mean like that sign over there that says Pine Park Road?”
Ali jumped in her seat. That was the sign. They were almost there.
“I can’t wait for a s’more!”
“We have a lot to do before we light the campfire. Besides, I don’t think it is a good idea to have s’mores before dinner?
Ali followed the signs and the map the rest of the way to the campground. When they arrived at their site, the tent was set and the firewood was ready but her father was nowhere to be seen. In the tent Ali found a note from her father:
The sun was already starting to set, and Ali had never been camping with out her father. It just didn’t seem right. She tried to keep busy but her mind kept thinking about her father. After what seemed like a very long time, Ali asked her Mother,
“Do you think that Dad forgot to come back?” Her mother laughed and said, “He has forgotten some strange things, but I don’t think he will forget that we are waiting for him are you worried about him coming back?.”
“Well kind of… it is just that it is dark, and it looks like it might storm, and Dad is always here when it is dark.”
Her mother pulled her onto her lap and said, “You know this reminds me of a story from along time ago. Some of Jesus’ friends were worried that he would leave them and they would never see him again. He promised them that He would come back, and he told them that they would know he was coming when they saw the signs.”
“What kinds of signs?”
“Things in the stars and the sky, they didn’t understand so told them to think about a fig tree.”
“Why a fig tree?”
“Well in the time of Jesus, people didn’t have stores like
we do, and could only eat fruit when the trees around them made fruit.
People would look forward to the trees making fruit because they could
only eat that fruit for a few weeks each year. People who didn’t
know how to read, and didn’t have calendars could tell the time
of the year by the signs around them. He told them that they could tell
summer was coming when they saw the trees starting to grow leaves. I
think your father told you what to expect when he was coming back.”
“Yeah he told me that I would hear the car, see the lights then I would hear him beep two times. What did Jesus’ friends do while they were waiting for their signs?”
“He told them to be ready and to pray when they were worried.”
Ali said “I think that is good advise” she closed here eyes and prayed. She told God how happy she was to be His daughter, she thanked Jesus for her family then she prayed that her father would arrive safely.
When she opened her eyes, she saw that her mother was praying too. Her mother opened her eyes and smiled, “Do you feel better”
Ali did feel less worried: “Yeah I do. I guess it was good advice.”
Just then in the distance Ali heard a rumbling. At first she thought it was thunder, but as the noise grew louder Ali could tell that it wasn’t thunder, but actually the sound of car tires on the gravel road. Ali looked at her mom and said, “Do you think it is him”
“It could be.”
Ali ran to the edge of her campsite and looked down the road. She could see two headlights coming closer to the campsite.
“Mom that car is coming this way,” Ali said excitedly. “Do you think it is him?”
“It could be”
As the car approached, Ali waved her arms and in the distance he heard a beep, then another beep. Ali yelled and squealed: “ Mom two beeps, it has to be him”
“I think you are right.”
In seconds the car pulled into the campsite and Ali’s father was there to give Ali a big hug.
“Where did you go?” she asked as she hugged him as hard as she could.
“I had to go back for these” said her father as he reached into a grocery bag and pulled out a bag of marshmallows.
“Camping just isn’t right without them”
The s’mores, Ali had forgotten all about the s’mores. She had been so worried about the signs, she had forgotten about the wonderful thing she was waiting for. As her father started the fire, she closed her eyes again and told God “thanks for Dad and thanks for s’mores.”
© 2003 Rob Neves Press - May be reproduced and used by teachers and catechists in their teaching ministry. Strictly for non-profit use. Please contact Rob Neves if you wish to use these resources for commercial purposes.