Look up to Heaven

By: Pastor Jarren Rogers

After Jesus’ death and resurrection, He appeared to His disciples and dispensed on them the Great Commission. He promised them that the Holy Spirit would come upon them and, just after saying this, Christ was lifted up and a cloud took Him out of sight.

The disciples just stood there, staring up at the sky. I imagine that one of them said something like, “Uhhh, now what?”

The last few years of their lives had been spent following Christ around and now He was simply gone. What was to be done?

Suddenly they heard a voice say, “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 1:11).

They looked over to see two men wearing white robes standing next to them.

Why do you stand looking up toward heaven?

I think there is some urgency hidden in their question. Why are you staring up at God when it’s time for you to get to work? Why are you continuing to search for Jesus in the clouds when He has done all He came to do? It’s your turn.

I think there are a lot of situations we face that instead of getting to work, we stare up to heaven. While it’s definitely okay to pray about the circumstances we find ourselves in, it shouldn’t give us permission to remain stagnant. God will do His part, but we have a part to play too!

If the disciples had continued staring up at the stars, the early church would have never been planted. Christianity would have never spread. But instead, they had to stop looking to God to do all the work and they had to help.

It’s like when my wife and I cook dinner. Sure, I could sit on the couch and let her do all of the work. Or I could stand up and help.

Too often, we like to stand by and give the tough cases over to God. We hope that we are allowed to stand by and let Him do all the hard work. But, I believe that in many of the prayers we pray, God has work for us to do.

That coworker for whose salvation you’ve been praying? Maybe God wants you to speak into his life. That family member whose life has been running off the rails? Maybe God wants you to step in and offer grace. The poverty and brokenness that plagues your community? Maybe God is telling you to roll up your sleeves and help.

It may be time for us to stop standing around with our heads in the clouds. It may just be time for us to meet God halfway. It may be time to get to work.

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