Yesterday was Ascension Day—the celebration of Jesus going to his rightful place of honor at the Father's right hand. For Jesus to go to the Father's immediate presence meant leaving the disciples' immediate presence.
In John's gospel, anticipating his departure, Jesus prayed for the disciples. The prayer is found in John 17 and the conclusion of the prayer will be Rev. Blackwelder's focus in The Well on Sunday. In that conclusion, Jesus prayed that his disciples would be one, as the Father and Son are one.
In divisive days as a nation and among Christians of all types, even among Christians within the United Methodist type, I sure hope Jesus is still praying that we be made one. We should join him in that prayer and in doing what we can to build unity, rather than division.
In anticipation of his ascending, Jesus prayed for his disciples. He also reassured them. In both Ascension passages that we'll read in the sanctuary Sunday (Luke 24:44-53 and Acts 1:1-11), he spoke of the promise of the Father.
While celebrating the glory of our ascendant Lord, we will consider God's promises Sunday and how this particular promise of the Father is the most consistent one God offers; it may well be the one we cling to most closely.