Prayer: Lord, let my prayer rise up before you as we remember today your Son’s ascension. Amen.
Reading: Psalm 1 (Click to read text)
Stop and GROW: After reading the text, discuss/ponder the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America's Book of Faith questions, which are part of Camp Mount Luther's GROW Time with campers.
QUESTION 1: What scares, confuses, challenges, or doesn’t make sense to me in this text?
QUESTION 2: What delights me in this text or is my favorite part of the story?
QUESTION 3: What stories or memories does this text stir in me?
QUESTION 4: What is God up to in this text?
Reflection: It’s often the case as I write devotions for this project that I will read a text and I’ll get an instant idea about how the scripture ties into what I’ve been thinking about recently or what might be appropriate for that particular period in time. Today, not so much!
Today is the day that we observe Ascension Day. It’s the day that Jesus, after making his resurrection appearances, ascended to the Father and was not seen on earth again in human form. We will celebrate Ascension on Sunday in most of our churches.
This is the Psalm for this Sunday. But I can’t see a way that this ties to the ascension. And I wanted it to, because it is the text we’ve appointed to look at this day and I wanted to write about this important observance.
Wait! Maybe that’s the point. Ascension Day is "hidden" for many. Many Christians today don’t remember to observe this day. But, I think it’s very important in the life of the church. And while I might not always do something “special” to observe this day, I do like to think about it and reflect on its significance each year. Right now at Mount Luther, we have an Amish group at camp, holding an Ascension Day retreat. The Amish and Mennonite Christians always close their shops and take this day off to observe and remember Jesus ascending to the Father. I think that’s great! As you go about your day today and as we observe the Ascension this Sunday, reflect on the significance of Jesus going to the Father. And, remember that next week, we’ll celebrate that even though Jesus is not physically here with us anymore, his advocate, the Holy Spirit, is with us now to guide us as we serve God here on earth. --Chad Hershberger, Camp Mount Luther Director
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