Monday, April 21, 2014

Easter 2014: Ascension

Acts 1:3-11
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What now? Jesus has risen! And He has returned triumphant to heaven, leaving His disciples on earth. As the descendants of the descendants of the descendants of the original apostles, we have never had the opportunity to see and touch the Messiah as we would another human being. We cannot eat with Him, listen to His human voice, touch the nail marks in His hands and feet. But we interact with Him in a new way, able to speak with Him at any time and in any place, not limited by physical distance.
Jesus' resurrection is not the end; it is the beginning! In our church and family we continue our celebration for a full 50 days. We fasted for 40 so now we feast for 50. We know that our time on earth is filled with difficulty. We face challenges far more difficult than the voluntary fasting of Lent. We encounter persecution as violent in its own way as that faced by the first Christians. But we know that the Easter celebration in heaven will be far longer and more rewarding than our time of suffering on earth. We know that Jesus has returned to heaven to welcome us home when the time comes. We know that even death will not prevail over us, that it will be only the beginning, that we will rise again in Christ!
We are His witnesses here on earth, to the ends of the earth. He is with us, ready to hear and respond to our every prayer. So we share Him with others and we know that despite the challenges we face we will receive His help and we will one day rejoin Him for a great celebration which will far outweigh every sorrow we go through, lasting far longer than the troubles we endure.

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