In case you want to know, the number is 200 days and counting! If you can see the graphic, you know I'm not talking about the next space shuttle launch. In exactly 200 days the Mrs. and I will officially be on tour, the 2011 Hot Rod Power Tour. We will be joining a few thousand horsepower-hungry road warriors on a cross country trip from Cocoa Beach, Florida, to Detroit, Michigan. I can't wait! I am not alone in my revved up anticipation. Hot Rod Magazine hosts several user forums, one entitled HRPT 2011 Countdown! One guy began the 2011 countdown just four days after the 2010 tour ended. Yeah, that's hard core!
I've got to admit that I enjoy logging in and counting down the number of days until the 2011 Hot Rod Power Tour. But tonight as I typed "200" I thought of someone else who operated in countdown mode. It was the Apostle Paul. He lived with the eager anticipation of the event of history, the second coming of Christ.
Join together in following my example, brothers and sisters, and just as you have us as a model, keep your eyes on those who live as we do. For, as I have often told you before and now tell you again even with tears, many live as enemies of the cross of Christ. Their destiny is destruction, their god is their stomach, and their glory is in their shame. Their mind is set on earthly things. But our citizenship is in heaven. And we eagerly await a Savior from there, the Lord Jesus Christ, who, by the power that enables him to bring everything under his control, will transform our lowly bodies so that they will be like his glorious body. (Philippians 3:17-21 NIV)
Paul was in countdown mode! As much as he appreciated his Roman citizenship, he longed for the Heavenly Tour. Jesus' return would usher in a brand new day, and all Paul could say was, "Bring it on!" We see his enthusiasm in the words "eagerly await." The words are translated from a single word in the original which conveys the idea of turning away from inferior things (hmmm...the Hot Rod Power Tour?) while earnestly expecting and intensely yearning for the coming of the Lord Jesus.
I enjoy cars. I look at hot rodding as a gift from God (1 Timothy 6:17). But I also understand that my enjoyment can become a distraction. Lord, help me live in eager expectation of what really matters!