Share your “highs” and your “lows” for the past week with each other.
In the first book, Theophilus, I wrote about all that Jesus did and taught from the beginning until the day when he was taken up to heaven, after giving instructions through the Holy Spirit to the apostles whom he had chosen. After his suffering he presented himself alive to them by many convincing proofs, appearing to them during forty days and speaking about the kingdom of God. While staying with them, he ordered them not to leave Jerusalem, but to wait there for the promise of the Father. “This,” he said, “is what you have heard from me; for John baptized with water, but you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit not many days from now.”
So when they had come together, they asked him, “Lord, is this the time when you will restore the kingdom to Israel?” He replied, “It is not for you to know the times or periods that the Father has set by his own authority.But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.” When he had said this, as they were watching, he was lifted up, and a cloud took him out of their sight. While he was going and they were gazing up toward heaven, suddenly two men in white robes stood by them. They said, “Men of Galilee, why do you stand looking up toward heaven? This Jesus, who has been taken up from you into heaven, will come in the same way as you saw him go into heaven.”
What surprises you or engages you in this reading? There is a saying that sometimes the church (and our lives) are so “heavenly minded” that we are of no “earthly” good. I kind of feel that the angels were telling this to the disciples at the end of the lesson. How might we strike an effective balance between being strengthened by our relationship with God and doing the work of loving God’s people on earth? How do you?
Special prayer requests: Pray for new life for all people suffering brokenness, pain, suffering or death.
Bless each other by making the sign of the cross on each one’s forehead.