I've been kicking around the idea of getting a tattoo for a while now - some of y'all are probably sick of hearing me talk about it. At first it was the thought of an olive tree on my side...such a lovely tree (I have a special place in my heart for trees) and biblically significant, ha ha.
At any rate, my current thought is to get 'maranatha' somewhere. I was hoping for the palm of my hand, but it turns out tattoos on the palm of your hand go away quickly... weird, right?
So why 'maranatha'? The word itself is found in I Cor. 16:22 and Rev. 22:20 and means - 'O Lord, come!' It is an expression of hope in the certain return of Christ - a time when what is broken will be restored; what has been veiled will be fully revealed; all longing will be satisfied; joy will be complete. Maranatha, then, is an expression of longing for that day - the day when faith becomes sight and Christ's kingdom is fully inaugurated.
It's a reminder to live in light of Christ's return - to hope for it; to long for it; to be found ready. I need that reminder more often than I'd care to admit. It's so easy to get absorbed in the minutia of life and to loose that wider perspective that the kingdom is coming. Another piece of the reminder, then, is to be about the work of the kingdom now - to be planting those tiny mustard seeds that will soon grow into a plant that overtakes the garden (Matt. 13:31-32). The seeds of compassion, justice, mercy, peace, love, joy, etc. In faith to not become tangled up by the concerns of life, but to trust that above all these concerns is the inevitable move toward full redemption.
Praise God, Maranatha!