My mother told me several stories of her childhood from the early part of the 20th century. One of the stories had to do with the fact that her family lived a semi-gypsy lifestyle. Grandfather would load the old pickup with tents, cooking supplies, bedding, all six children, grandma and himself, and off they would go from Missouri to wherever the cotton fields called. Mom said it was a hard life, and they would be away from home for a long time. She longed for home as a child.

Jesus left His heavenly home to come to earth on a mission to redeem humanity. His stay was approximately 33 years, but then He went back home. He longed for home. Before He left this earth, He concluded some unfinished business with His disciples.

Before Going Home, He Gave His Disciples Instructions (Acts 1:1-2)

The themes He instructed them included:
living life to the fullest through His love (John 3:16)
living life with a moral compass (Matt. 5:3-12)
living life with a positive outlook (Matt. 14:27)
living life with concern for others (Rom. 12:10).

What Jesus did before He went home, He continues to do with His disciples today. His ascension allowed Him to invade our stubborn wills and create a willingness to grasp the truth of His undying love for us. The first disciples understood that, and so should we!

Before Going Home, He Gave His Disciples Assurance of His Continuing Presence
This second verse is a verse of assurance for His disciples that He would return for them. He assure them by promising the Holy Spirit—His present-tense presence for all followers.

Lloyd Ogilvie wrote about this assurance of Christ’s continuing presence: The disciples “needed to know that the same Lord who had lived and died and been raised up for them would be the source of their power to live the abundant life He had promised them. He had told them that they would never be alone. He would come to them and never leave them.”

That assurance extends to modern disciples in 2014! With the Holy Spirit comes the power to discern; the power to live victoriously over sin, death and hell; the power to make a difference in others’ lives; the power to be yourself in Christ. This is Christ’s total desire for His followers.

His Return Home Means One Day I Will Go Home
The sages of the early church believed Jesus came to be one of us so He could make us what He is.

John 14:2 says Jesus told His disciples that in His Father’s house in heaven, a special dwelling place of God, where there are many mansions or rooms. It indicates this is not a temporary dwelling place, but where believers remain for eternity. Some commentary writers observe He told His disciples there’s plenty of room to receive all who will receive Him and that no disciple would be excluded.

Someone wrote that Christians are not citizens of this world trying to make our way to heaven; we are citizens of heaven trying to make our way through this world. “We are to live as God’s redeemed, as heirs of heaven, and as citizens of another land: the Kingdom of God…We live as those who are on a journey home; a home we know will have the lights on and the door open and our Father waiting for us when we arrive.”

My mother understood this concept. She said it always was great to return home to their house in southern Missouri after their cotton picking days were done. Home…what a beautiful thought.

Whatever obstacles you face in life, as a Christian you will ascend at the end just as Jesus did into your eternal home! As the early church said, “Come, Lord Jesus!”

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