4 “‘Men of Galilee,’ they said, ‘why do you stand here looking into the sky? This same Jesus, who has been taken from you into heaven, will come back in the same way you have seen Him go into heaven.’”
Acts 1:11 (NIV)
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Today’s Scripture offers a pair of pointers. Two guys from the greatest “home team” ever bring a message of activating hope.
Yes, hope makes us spring into action. Hope gets to us all -- deeply and uncommonly stirs us and leaves us changed. The greater the hope, the better the action.
Here are the two angelic hope accents:
HEAVEN: Hope of heaven doesn’t freeze us until we thaw in God’s presence. Instead, it activates us. It makes us care about the now. It makes us long to take others with us.
It also hurries us along to ultimate realities and gets us out of doomsday ditches. It makes us agree with God in saying, “Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven.“ And it gets us rolling up our sleeves in joining Him as heaven does.
If you don’t care about heaven, you’ll properly care for earth even less. You make heaven important and earth will become too. Hope of heaven activates everything. Hope for earth alone shrivels the soul.
HIS RETURN: Jesus will return just as He left. He gave us His Word and His Spirit as a pledge. Every other prophecy of Christ has been fulfilled. This one will be no different.
This hope then has substance. We will not be left alone, abandoned. In fact, Christ left us His Spirit as a deposit guaranteeing His return (Ephesians 1:13,14).
Therefore, His return beckons us to stay watchful, active, ready. And His Spirit reminds us we are not alone. This #BetterTogether keeps us growing and going until He returns.
Reflect: How important to daily living is heaven to you? Does the promise of Christ’s return motivate you?
A prayer to consider: O may both these hopes dominate my thoughts and keep me going, LORD! May the hope of HEAVEN make me laser-like in how I live today, and may the expectancy of Your RETURN make me vigilant, caring for everything I do and say. Amen.