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"Beam Me Up, Father."

So when the apostles were with Jesus, they kept asking him, “Lord, has the time come for you to free Israel and restore our kingdom?”

He replied, “The Father alone has the authority to set those dates and times, and they are not for you to know. But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes upon you. And you will be my witnesses, telling people about me everywhere—in Jerusalem, throughout Judea, in Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.”

After saying this, he was taken up into a cloud while they were watching, and they could no longer see him. As they strained to see him rising into heaven, two white-robed men suddenly stood among them. “Men of Galilee,” they said, “why are you standing here staring into heaven? Jesus has been taken from you into heaven, but someday he will return from heaven in the same way you saw him go!”

Acts 1:6-11 New Living Translation (NLT)

In our humanity, we have a tendency to view things only from our own perspective. Our wants and our needs often come first in our minds. Perhaps that's a childish trait God placed within us so that He could look upon us as His children. After all Jesus had said and done before and after He was crucified, His disciples were still trying to find out what was in it for them. Even as Christ was about to blow this Popsicle stand and return to the Father in Heaven, He had to explain to them what would happen next.

When God is ready for His Kingdom to come, it will come. Scripture indicates it will happen when we least expect it (1 Thessalonians 5:2) and that we must be ready. With death, some are fortunate and given time to say goodbye to a loved one who is passing from this life. However, death is sometimes sudden and unexpected, leaving us stunned that our days are truly numbered on this planet. Yet, when Jesus returns to establish God's Kingdom some will still be alive. In every instance, God keeps the numbers the dates and times. He who numbers our hairs, numbers our days. The time we are born to the time we die has been preordained (Psalm 39:4) and it doesn't matter what our opinion is on this subject. We can ponder the reality of this at every funeral. When Jesus is to return is also God's call. The plan is not ours, it is God's.

So on His way back up, Jesus told them what would happen next and left them with this assignment: "With the help of the Holy Spirit, tell the world about Me." (Matthew 28:19-20) With that He was beamed back to Heaven. Can't you just see them standing there watching with their mouths open as Christ ascended to Heaven? God sent the angels to tell them to close their mouths. "He's coming back the same way He left." (Acts 1:11)

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