HIS FIGHT IS OURS TOO
By now, we have been inoculated with the mantra of Manny Pacquiao’s latest boxing fight: Manny’s fight was the fight of all Filipinos. His victory is a shared national triumph. (Laban ni Manny, laban ng Pilipino!). But is his personal glory really the glory of his fellow citizens? If only his huge earnings will also go into the pockets of all his poor fans!
Today we come to the ending saga of the mystery of Easter. This Sunday, we celebrate the Ascension of the Lord Jesus Christ into heavenly glory. His earthly life is over and now he resumes the life he had with the Father from the beginning. Jesus returns to heaven.
The Ascension reminds us that Jesus’ own fight for goodness, for service, for salvation, for rightesouness before God and harmony with our neighbors, all these were really our fight, too. His life, death and glory truly flow into the lives of all humanity but especially on those who believe in him as Lord of their lives.
In the Ascension, God exalts his Son. But he also exalts all of us by telling us that Jesus won his earthly battles so that all of us can win our own struggle to reach the heavenly reward. The Ascension is the doorway to a real and living relationship with God that transforms us and all our relationships.
We see Jesus rising up to heaven in power. Don’t forget though, that as he departs, he imparts his power on his disciples. “…you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you. You will be my witnesses… to the ends of the earth” (cf. Acts 1:1-11). Now we share in his power to love, to forgive, and to serve. Now we are his witnesses in the world. The Spirit that animated Jesus on earth is at work in our hearts too! The gospel (cf Lk. 24) shows Jesus blessing his disciples so that their work will also be as fruitful and meaningful as his own.
May we experience the power of God in our daily life of weakness, ignorance and sin. May our eyes be opened to see that Jesus’ power accompanies us every day.