As the hype built in the weeks before the Revelation 12 sign on September 23rd, 2017, I was full of both hope and regret. For me, it was like being on a long road trip and finally seeing a long-awaited sign. Sure, you have GPS and all, maybe even a paper map so you know your destination is up ahead, down the road, but it is comforting when you finally spot that sign.
There was a line up of stars and planets on Sept. 23, which was described in the book of Revelation, chapter 12. This was a rare alignment and has only happened once before. Revelation 12 describes a woman giving birth and then the child being injured slightly. Many Christians believed that the sign meant they would be suddenly removed from the planet before the great tribulation begins, when the planet will go through some devasting changes. I hoped they were right, but was unsure. Here is a spiritual story about this time period in my life.
The Sign, the Road and the Marathon Runner
During the last few weeks, I was walking along on this straight and narrow spiritual road, but there were others walking that road with me and we all had different ways of walking… or running. We were heading towards a certain destination and were expecting something big to happen when we reached the sign. I was not really in great shape spiritually so I was walking, I certainly wasn’t like one of those amazing sprinters. Still, I could keep up with most of the others on the road, I wasn’t exactly going at a snail’s pace, either. I was doing OK.
Of course, the ones I admired most were the atheletes who ran at a steady pace, the marathon runners. They'd come running by on the road once in awhile. I certainly looked up to them, they were the long distance spiritual runners, the buff spiritual atheletes. ,They must work out a lot, the rest of us thought to ourselves as the long distance runners smiled and ran by. I couldn’t do that, I thought, I’m too busy.
One day, a long distance runner slowed down beside me so I told her how much I admired her hard work in the Lord.
“Wow, you must workout every morning to be a spiritual marathoner,” I said, “I imagine you do a super serious daily warm up - maybe an hour of prayer every morning? Then another hour of weight lifting to keep yourself strong - reading and meditating on the Word? After that you are ready for your daily run through life, right? My trainer wants me to do all that stuff, but I’m not very consistent. I don’t have time.”
She laughed, “No way. I don’t work out two hours every day before I start my run. I do get up early and focus on warming up for a half hour or so. The most important thing is to go to the spiritual gym every morning and do it consistently every day. Doing a few reps every day is more important than worrying about how many or how long. Half an hour is a good start.”
I was astonished, “Really, just a half hour?”
“Yup, once you feel yourself getting a little stronger, you’re going to want more, right? What matters most is that you do your spiritual warm up so you can walk a little better that day. After a few weeks you will start jogging. Eventually, one day, you will find yourself running a little. It will be so exciting that you will actually start looking forward to the morning workout.
"Don’t be overwhelmed because it is hard at first, just make that small daily sacrifice, get up a little early, turn off all distractions and make your spiritual workout a priority. Half an hour is a great start, be consistent and you will learn to run,” she gave me a little wave and started to run again.
“Thanks!” I waved back and watched her running steadily. Way up beyond her, I saw a big sign, the one we were waiting for. Everyone walking with me was excited about this Rev. 12 sign. Some said the rapture would happen when we reached that sign.
As I walked, I thought about the marathon runner. Sure, it would be amazing to be caught up like a bride meeting her groom and attend a wedding feast and all that, but I wasn’t happy with the race I had run. I felt I should have done more for my Lord. I should have worked out more spiritually, spread the gospel, loved more, planted seed. That Rev. 12 sign up ahead was getting closer and closer. I was excited but I must admit, I had my regrets.
Time went by and finally I arrived at the big Rev. 12 sign. A small group of us stood on that straight and narrow road and waited out the day, a hopeful bride longing to see her love, but He did not come. Not yet.
Many people are saying that nothing happened, but I disagree. The last few years there have been many signs on that road, but I merely took note and kept going at the same pace. This sign made me stop and examine my life, my walk and my potential in the Lord. In the sky, the virgin constellation gave birth. Some say nothing happened, but I stand here as witness - that day something was birthed in my life.
Today is September 24th, so we move beyond the sign and continue towards the destination. But today I am grateful for the chance to do my morning workout at the spiritual gym, to be more consistent, get into great shape and maybe even learn to run. The Maker of the sign has once again, transformed my life.
- Maxine Raymor
On September 23rd, Maxine published her first novel, "Mountain Realm, Epic Adventure Sparked by the Sun". You can find it on Amazon.