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Friday, May 10, 2013


Luke 24:46-53

           Have you tried responding to these fundamental questions in life:  For whom do I wake up in the morning? What drives me to live the day? Where am I going to at the end of my life’s journey?
         The first principle and foundation of the Spiritual Exercises of the Jesuits is that we are created to know, love and be with God forever.  This is the whole purpose of life!  To achieve that goal is the ultimate quest that one can ever have.  In the mystery of the incarnation, Jesus Christ became a pilgrim God to offer the pilgrim humanity fullness of life: “I came that they may have life, and have it abundantly” (Jn 10:10).
         The Ascension of Jesus did not just complete His earthly pilgrimage but opened up a new door of a further pilgrimage for humanity beyond the material world.   There is something more to life than what we can experience by our senses.   The ultimate challenge of our faith is for us to trust that God will bring us to His dwelling place: “In my Father’s house, there are many dwelling places. I will go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and will take you to myself, so that where I am, here you may be also” (Jn 14:2-3).   Now we know why God created us!  Now we know the purpose of  life. God does not only give us a promise but gives us all the means in fulfilling that promise.  From our end, everything we do is geared towards the achieving the goal for which we were created.  
         The gospel of Luke started in the temple with a priest (Zechariah representing the priesthood of the Old Testament) who was unable to give a blessing.  The same gospel ended in the temple where the disciples were praising God after the High Priest Jesus Christ gave them the blessing.   The disciples were given the mission to proclaim repentance and forgiveness to all the nations.  They were not just the first missionaries but the first witnesses as well.
         I once asked a friend who comes from another faith orientation where his religion would bring him after he dies.  He was stunned because he does not know where he is going to.   After we die we do not want to be reincarnated into a worm, a cow, a cockroach or any lovely animal.  We also do not believe that we just disintegrate into air as pure consciousness and become part of cosmic dust.   We are ascending to heaven to live life to the fullest in eternity.
         Here are the beautiful lyrics of the song: Go the Distance from the animated movie Hercules:

I have often dreamed, of a far off place
Where a hero's welcome, would be waiting for me
Where the crowds will cheer, when they see my face
And a voice keeps saying, this is where I'm meant to be
I'll be there someday, I can go the distance
I will find my way, if I can be strong
I know ev'ry mile, will be worth my while
When I go the distance, I'll be right where I belong....

The Ascension of Jesus is a sign of hope for all of us.  After our life’s pilgrimage, we are going home!  Home to where we should belong.  Home together with our family and friends and all our loved ones.  Home where our Father who has been anxiously awaiting for us will greet us: “Welcome home!”

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