In Acts 1 we find the account of Christ’s ascension into heaven. After giving many convincing proofs and speaking to them about the kingdom of God, the time had come for the Son to return to the Father. Before he ascends, he commissions them by saying, “You will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.” After saying this he is taken up and hidden from their sight.
Scripture tells us that the disciples stood there watching Jesus ascend even after he was hidden from their sight. They were literally straining their eyes to see Jesus. Two angels appear to them and remind them that Jesus would indeed return in the way he had left and asked them “Why do you stand here looking into the sky?” I wonder how long they’d have stayed there looking for Jesus in the clouds. Reading this I think that we can be like the disciples. We long for Christ’s return (as we should), but in doing so forget that He has given us a mission. We spend our days “staring into the sky” when Jesus has commissioned us to be his witnesses. Sometimes we are content to keep our faith to ourselves. I know that I’ve been guilty of this. But God has given us His Spirit so that we can share the love of His Son. Jesus will come back in the way that he left. We await that day with anticipation that spurs us onto His mission of making disciples.
Dear Lord, we long for your return. We await that day that you will make all things new. Help us to look forward, but to also make the most of every opportunity to be your witness in this world.