Continuing through our Lord’s life depicted in the Life of Christ icon, we arrive at his baptism in the Jordan by the John the Baptist. The Psalmist, Prophet Isaiah, and St Luke each reinforce this remarkable moment in Jesus’ life in their own way. And Christ’s very own faithfulness on our behalf opens the way for all baptized persons to take hold resurrection life and our Father’s love by faith.
Tonight we celebrated the Ascension, on the eve of the feast. We commemorate the return of Christ to glory just prior to the giving of the Spirit on Pentecost. In particular, we rejoiced in how Jesus has brought our human nature into the Father’s holy presence, paving the way for our future perfection in eternity. Read, reflect, listen, and sing joyfully the hymn below-for Jesus has made our sanctification and glorification a promise in reality, not a vain hope in the imagination.
Jesus, Who Rose to Realms on High (L. Anderson, 2016 – tune #400, Hymnal 1982)
Imagining perfection can be difficult, but that’s the very vision the Apostle John invites us to envision in our selection from the Revelation that we read this week. My prayer is that in picturing and contemplating the ideal in eternity, we’ll be motivated to practice in preparation for perfection in our daily lives until then.
Gotta love when the sacramental rites of the church paint a picture of grace for us–in this instance, how marriage models the eternal love Christ has for his Church. This lovely image gets picked up on in the surprising context of the new heavens and new earth in Revelation 21. Read, listen, and reflect on how God demonstrates his everlasting love for us, especially as seen in the ideal of the marriage covenant.
Christ is risen! Alleluia! And by his resurrection, our Lord has ushered in the breakthrough of eternity into time and space – the beginning of the new heavens and new earth promised by the prophet Isaiah (which we find in today’s readings here). How have you seen the new creation begin in your life?
Change is inevitable, but when it comes from heaven it is good. Read and reflect with me on the new thing our Lord does for us and creation through Jesus Christ. (For the “visual aid” with my opening joke, click here.)