In these verses, Jesus warns his listeners not to become preoccupied by predictions about the end-times. In Matthew’s account of this conversation, Jesus says that even he doesn’t know when it will happen! So why would we expect a mere human to know? Instead, he would have us pay attention to the ways God’s kingdom is unfolding all around us in the present moment.
It is easy to get caught up in “the sky is falling” mindset, especially when there seems to be so much evidence pointing to that as truth. But our call in these verses is to hold the difficult and fearful realities in tension with the realities that are good and beautiful. We are to lean into the hope and the promise of God’s steadfast love and faithfulness.
How often do you lament the state of the world while ignoring the signs of God’s presence and providence? What practices help you cultivate this simple attentiveness to what God is doing in the present?
Throughout the day, say “thank you” to God each time you see something worthy of praise.