And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and will take you to myself, so that where I am, there you may be also. (John 14:3 NRSV)

In 1914 Sir Ernest Henry Shackleton, an English explorer, led an expedition to the South Pole. As the ice began to close in on his boat, he had to leave some of his men stranded on Elephant Island as he went for help. He secured another ship on South Georgia Island and returned for his men. After several unsuccessful attempts, the weather finally permitted him to sail through to where the men were, pick them up, and then get out before the ice closed up again. Shackleton asked his crew why they had their things packed and standing by when he came back. They said, "Sir, when you left, you said you would come back for us, so we never gave up hope. Whenever the weather looked favorable, we would pack up our things and say, 'Maybe Shackleton will return for us today.' We were always ready for your coming."

We don't know what the future holds, but we know Who holds the future. There is One who is returning for us. We are not forgotten. There is one who has gone to prepare a place for us.

My savior, Jesus, I'm glad my future is in your hands. Amen.

Ron Newhouse

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