Jesus' Last Will and Testament!
Jesus made His followers the sole heirs of His Estate. And He did this knowing it was a great leap of faith on that first Ascension Day when He returned to His Father. On this day, Jesus left his disciples and all those who followed them--in charge. Think about it? Jesus, the Son of God the Father, who put His life's effort, time, planning and patience into getting to this day, left His legacy to these unsteady few. Jesus was really taking a huge risk!
Looked what He endured to get to this day! He was born in a stable, exiled to Egypt, learned carpentry from His father, traveled many miles by foot, preached to large groups, healed many, argued often with Pharisees, received constant threats, eventually endured a torturous death, and knew abandonment from His handpicked followers.
Yet, Jesus bequeathed to these “shaky” followers not only this most important mission, but of working out its details. But He took the chance anyway, because it was time for them to stand up and be counted.
When Jesus rose from the dead, and walked with His disciples, He never once mentioned their desertion. He never took them to task. For instance, He never asked Peter “Are you sure I can count on you this time?”
Instead, Jesus asked Peter, “Do you love me?” And He accepted Peter’s response “Yes Lord, you know that I love you.” And that was it. He didn’t lecture him or make him promise never to do it again. He just took Peter at his word and trusted.
It was much the same with the others too. Jesus appeared to them, made conversation with them, helped them fish, and on one occasion even made them breakfast. But never dwelled on their betrayal.
Instead on this Ascension Day, Jesus proposed they “Go to the ends of the earth, and baptize everyone in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit" -and trusted each to understand. Then, He returned to the Father.
Pope Francis remarked: “If we cannot believe the Lord loves us tenderly, and trusts us with everything, and in every generation that this Church will work, then Ascension is the day to see that trust.” It is a great day for us to appreciate how the Lord moves away from our failures and offers another try. Our Lord truly loves and places all His hope in us.
We can easily believe that Jesus did leave His Will behind, and we are its recipients. As His remaining heirs, Jesus trusts us not to squander this inheritance.
If Jesus asks today, how we’re doing with our inheritance, what would our response be?