On Thursday, Christians in many traditions will celebrate the Ascension of Jesus Christ to the Father in heaven. It is a day that passes without much fanfare or even notice among mainline Protestants. (Read the story of Jesus’ ascension in Acts 1.) Does ascension matter? Our good friend Andrew Purves says, “Yes!” Ascension matters because it is in Jesus’ ascension that we have hope in the power of Jesus Christ even 2000 years after his death and resurrection. The ascension is how we know that Jesus continues to reign at the right hand of God – triumphant and victorious. Ascension is why we can be confident that what Jesus did when he lived on earth is what Jesus does today as he reigns over heaven and earth. Thanks be to God!

Enjoy this poetic reflection on Ascension from George Grove:

Settling on Ascension

The lake by the Monastery is still,
Still here in the early evening
Here by the lake on Ascension’s  Eve.
There is no sign of Ascension.
Things are descending, settling, not ascending.
Things, things like ducks, geese, butterflies.

Things like me?
Settling for the night, all descending
Here by the Monastery’s still waters.

Is there any sign of the Ascension promised tomorrow?
A fish ascends from the deep to shatter the still waters;
Is this a Ascension’s sign?

The sun settling quickly beyond the green Georgia pines,
Rays broken in the boughs; rays dancing, bidding farewell
On the still again lake by the Monastery.

Settling, settling, all is descending, not ascending
Here by the lake on Ascension’s  Eve.
But I know that His ascension comes.

On the morrow His ascension comes,
For my lectionary tells me so
Here by the lake on the eve of Ascension.

by George Grove