We all need a reminder from time to time about priorities, the importance of focusing on the big things, the right things. That’s one reason Christians felt the need for a church calendar to balance the demands of the secular calendar. We are, after all, “in this world but not of it.” We just need to remember that unique place we live, both in the Kingdom of God while also living within our own culture and time. And we often feel the tension generated in such a location.
After he said this, he was taken up before their very eyes, and a cloud hid him from their sight. Acts 1:9 NIV
This Sunday is one of those calendar reminders. Ascension Day this year is Thursday, May 13th, the fortieth day after Easter. That marks this Sunday on our church calendar as Ascension Sunday, the day we remember Jesus leaving his disciples and ascending into heaven. I imagine it was a wonderful day for Jesus and a terrible day for the disciples. Or was it the other way around – a terrible day for Jesus and a wonderful thing for the disciples to behold? It was certainly transitional, and transitions generate such anxiety.
A friend shared a quote with me by Tim Kizzlar, the senior pastor of Sisters Community Church: “Our greatest fear as individuals and as a church should not be of failure but of succeeding at things in life that don’t really matter.” We do want to succeed, but our commitment to following Jesus tempers that need and redirects our energies, gifts, resources, and dreams in the right direction – God’s direction. We need a little time to break away from the calendar of life and sit in God’s presence. We need a little time to reflect on the things that really matter in life. We need to be sure and assured that we are working in the direction God wants us to work. We need to worship. We hope you will join us this week to celebrate Ascension Sunday and ask the essential questions together.