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Stay Alert

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“Minister Diane, we need you to come to the hospital.” 

Several years ago, I received training in pastoral care through the church I attended. This proved to be rather intense, but extremely rewarding. One of the exercises was learning how to be prepared to receive and respond to a crisis call—a member of the church who needed emergency help. A crisis call could come at any time: in the wee hours of the night, during the workday, or so early in the morning that you have not yet had that first cup of coffee.

When I reflect on those days and how I responded to “being ready at all times,” I think about the conversation Jesus had with His disciples where He tells them of the things that must happen before His great return. He also admonishes them to be watchful and ready at any time:

“However, no one knows the day or hour when these things will happen, not even the angels in heaven or the Son himself. Only the Father knows. And since you do not know when that time will come, be on guard! Stay alert!” Mark 13:32-33 (NLT).

After receiving instruction in responding to an emergency call, we were sent on our way. For the next few days, I felt I was on heightened alert, waiting for the all-important call to come. I would make sure my cell phone had a full charge and was not silenced. I monitored the amount of gas I had in my car, and I wore my nice suit when I went out to shop, just in case I received a call. But when there was no call after 4 or 5 days, my alertness began to subside. If it had not been for fellow ministers-in-training reaching out to stay connected, I might have forgotten entirely that I would be needed.

It is important to stay alert to the things of God. Living a life that glorifies Jesus Christ means we continue being a light that shines bright in a dark and sinful world. First Peter 5:8 says,

Stay alert! Watch out for your great enemy, the devil. He prowls around like a roaring lion, looking for someone to devour.

We know through the Word of God that Jesus is coming back. But no one knows the day or the hour.

The long-awaited call came from my pastor around 12:30 one night:

“Minister Diane, we need you to come to the hospital.”

He asked me to come to the hospital immediately and meet him in the lobby. He went on to say that a member of the church was very ill and needed our prayers and comfort. Also, the family of the church member needed to be consoled.

I had completed my training and instruction. I had accepted the responsibility to be prepared to respond at any time. Although I did not know the day or the hour the call would come, I knew that it would come.

We too must heed the instruction of the Lord and stay alert and ready for His glorious return.

Lord, we thank You for giving us Your Word to guide us into all truth. Help us live a life that is pleasing in Your sight. We want to always be prepared for Your glorious return. In Jesus’ name, amen.


Scripture is quoted from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright © 1996, 2004, 2015 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved. 

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About The Author


Diane has worked in CBN's Prayer Center for over 20 years. She loves playing the piano and singing worship songs, shopping with her daughter, and taking walks with her dog.

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