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September 12, 2021 | Doug Sauder
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“They looked steadfastly toward heaven as He went up . . .”—Acts 1:10 (NKJV)
Try to imagine where the disciple’s heads were as they watched Jesus ascend into heaven. They had just been through the rollercoaster of all rollercoasters. Within the past few weeks, they had known the lowest of lows and the highest of highs. They saw their Lord taken, tortured, and executed . . . only to then witness His resurrection!
Luke tells us just prior to this moment that they asked Jesus if He would now finally set up His Kingdom on earth. Undoubtedly, they were expecting and hoping for a “Yes.” After all, an earthly empire with Jesus on the throne was their ultimate hope, and His resurrection seemed to completely clear the way for it. But He didn’t say, “Yes.” Instead, He basically says, “That’s for My Father to know, I have something else for you to do.”
As shocking as this answer was, Jesus then leaves them! He ascends into heaven and they’re left staring up at Him. They must have been dazed and confused at this point. The rollercoaster just plunged again as their expectations of the Kingdom and their King weren’t met. And in this moment, they do all that they really can do . . . they look up to heaven.
That’s a good place to look. Earth will always be filled with unforeseen turns and unmet expectations. Things here won’t always make sense. It’s easy to loose sight of heaven during our earthly sojourn. We can get so consumed by what’s happening to us horizontally that we forget to go vertical. The pressures, the responsibilities, and the cares of this world . . . they add up real quick!
But when we’re tossed to and fro by the waves of this world, we need an anchor point to keep our hearts fixed in place, and that place is heaven! We need to deliberately direct ourselves towards heaven as the disciples did. Even Jesus did this prior to His ascension: “Jesus spoke these words, lifted up His eyes to heaven . . .” (John 17:1 NKJV).
Lifting our heads up and looking heavenward is good for us. It resets our perspective on life and reminds us where everything is ultimately heading: The King will return and the physical Kingdom will come! Until then, we’re connected to heaven by God’s Spirit and called to focus on what’s above (Colossians 3:2).
Regardless of what might be happening around us, let’s never forget to lift our heads up!
DIG: What examples do the disciples give to us?
DISCOVER: Why is it important to look heavenward?
DISPLAY: This week, make it a point to look up to heaven—both physically and spiritually. Spend some time looking up and seeing the beauty and glory of God’s creation, knowing that the Creator of all can surely sustain us, protect us, and build us up even in the unforeseen turns and unmet expectations. Be intentional about seeking His will, His plan, and His kingdom here on earth.
Pastor Dan Hickling serves our online community, also known as the Calvary Chapel Online Campus. He and his wife Becky have been married for 22 years and have two children, Lauren and Danny. Both Dan and Becky have been part of the CCFL church family for 22 years and have served in full time ministry for 20 of those years.