I recently had a conversation with a co-worker about where Heaven will be when Jesus returns. My current eschatological view tells me here on earth. Some think its elsewhere, still others think it’s nowhere, and some rightly perceive that somehow it is also within believers. But anyone that talks about heaven would likely agree that no matter where, it is somehow a few if not many steps up than our current lot.
Talking about the wonders of Heaven is one of the things that makes loving Jesus so appealing. I don’t feel too pressed to write about Heaven but I do about the Ascension. Do you realize how awesome/strange/even silly it would have been to watch Jesus ascend in the air whether it be very slowly or very quickly and to look around at the group of people standing there trying to figure out how to discuss or explain what just happened? Had God not sent two angels to let them know what happened and what to expect they would have been left scratching their heads.
I would have experienced all the similar sorrow and fear that came with watching an innocent savior die, the joy and adoration that comes with seeing Him resurrected. Then, I would have been left in a stupor seeing His Ascension. It’s harder to comprehend then the transfiguration because that at least revealed His glory. In this case gravity was defied, for him ceased, here on earth and He majestically moved up past the clouds without flapping his arms or anything. And He didn’t even do it secretly.
In fact read, the first chapter of Acts and tell me Luke the Physician doesn’t just treat the whole thing nonchalantly. One second everyone’s eating talking and being taught. And a sentence later in verse 9 He tells them the last thing He needs to say and disappears. Then by verse 12 the apostles are walking back to Jerusalem from the Mount of Olives either saying a) well I guess we have some harvests to reap for the kingdom or b) why does He keep doing these crazy things? I definitely don’t remember this part in the scriptures, must be in the psalms because they’re so stinking long, lets pray through the psalms together until this makes sense.
By the time you’ve arrived at a conclusion you hardly even remember how you got there. Where you formerly were is not forgotten but now your shadow casts over it. You reflect back and say it really wasn’t so confusing or difficult after all, precisely because now you are in a place where you can see things more clearly or in a better light. In Acts chapter 1 the disciples are reassured that one day Jesus will return the same way in which He left. I think that motivation helped them to rise up and move up because they found that together God and men were moving closer together again. When Heaven does finally invade earth, we’ll likely find that moving up was not something we initiated.