Friday, May 22 2020
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." (Acts 1:6-11)
I find incredible meaning in the fact that Jesus Christ died on a cross, was resurrected three days later, and ascended back to heaven. It gives me comfort in these troubled times that God has the power to go back and forth from heaven. Jesus ascends to the God and promises us that he will not leave us orphaned. We are empowered by the Holy Spirit to hear the Word of God. Jesus is the way, the truth, and the life. He sets a path for us to walk. Part of this path is horizontal. We follow the commandments of God in our life by being the best person that we can be. We help each other when we are hurting and we invite everyone to join the family at St. John’s, Huntington. Through our prayer and worship we develop a vertical spirituality. This rarely happens if we are casual Christians. When we give our whole life to Christ, we develop a personal relationship with God. We have a conversation every morning. We pray for those who are hurting and God fills our heart with love, peace, joy, and a sense that our life has meaning. When things are tough for so many people both financially and mentally, God is especially present with us. We are able to do incredible things through the Holy Spirit and we can draw other’s hearts to relationship with God. I feel the presence of God when I am doing church together with all of you. This physical separation really tests our faith, but we have come together through zoom in new ways that have kept us close in heart.
We are going to throw the biggest 275th Anniversary celebration next year when we are allowed to come back together! I want to still have the Harvest Fair in October. Some of the raffles might have to be online, but we need our ECW to have the resources to help our community. We are going to start getting back together at church in July in small groups, but it won’t be long until we are all back together. The bishop will set the rules, but have faith that we will emerge stronger than ever at St. John’s. We have faith that Jesus Christ died, rose again, and ascended into heaven. He will be with us every step of this uncertain Covid-19 path. We will continue to live stream with Facebook and YouTube. If you do not have the ability to get online with zoom, we are hiring interns to get you a computer that will easily get you connected. Please let Coral know of your situation and we will get back to you.
Almighty God, whose blessed Son our Savior Jesus Christ ascended far above all heavens that he might fill all things: Mercifully give us faith to perceive that, according to his promise, he abides with his Church on earth, even to the end of the ages; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, in glory everlasting. Amen.