Waiting & the Ascension

Today is the day on the church calendar that we celebrate Jesus' Ascension--40 days after Easter. In ten more days it will be Pentecost when we remember the pouring out of the Holy Spirit, the fulfillment of Jesus' promise that He would always be with us. The Sunday after is Trinity Sunday. I'm realizing that it's important to remember those days even though we don't makr them at the church we attend.

I was just reading an article by Lisa Burnette in The Covenant Companion called "The Revealing Work of the Holy Spirit." She talks about how following Jesus' resurrection He gave the disciples the instruction to wait. Then 50 days after Easter, 10 days after the Ascension, The Holy Spirit is sent upon the disciples at Pentecost.

There's a lot of waiting in the Bible: Noah's family waiting for the waters to recede; Sarah, Rachel, Hannah and others waiting to conceive; the Hebrews waiting to enter the Promised land; all of Israel waiting for the Messiah to arrive.

Even on the church calendar we wait. We've just been through Lent, a period of 40 days waiting for Easter morning to arrive. Now we're in the midst of 50 days of waiting for Pentecost.

My wife and I feel like we've been waiting the last two years for the next journey in our life to begin. Waiting is difficult. It sucks at times. I know it's supposed to develop patience, perserverance and a deeper trust in God. That's not always reassuring when you're in the midst of waiting.

And this is why it's important to remember those church holidays I mentioned at the beginning of this post. We are in the midst of waiting: Ascension Day reminds us of this as we patiently await the return of Christ. Pentecost reminds us that we're not in this waiting alone. The Holy Spirit is with us. We often forget this--at least I do. I don't realize the Holy Spirit's work in my daily life, even though He is busily working. It's important to take time to reflect on how God has been at work in our daily lives.

It's important to remember the Holy Spirit's presence during our waiting, I'm realizing. I need that reassurance. I need that hope. Our God is One, but He exists in three distinct manifestations. Each is important in our life. I need the reminder of the Holy Spirit's presence during struggles with waiting.

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