Ready to Launch
“You’ve gotta have a sense of urgency!”
That’s what a coach I once worked with often yelled to our athletes as they were completing their drills during our daily practices.
This coach was top-notch - he worked with national champions and professional athletes. When he spoke, our athletes listened!
The principle he was communicating is that if you want to accomplish something special in sports, you can’t drift mindlessly through practice. You’ve got to be diligent in your approach!
The Books of Acts has something to say about that.
Immediately following Jesus’ ascension into heaven in Acts 1, two angels show up and essentially tell the disciples that, in continuing Jesus’ ministry, they’ve gotta have a sense of urgency!
Acts 1:9-11 tells the story:
“…He was taken up before their very eyes, and a cloud hid him from their sight. They were looking intently up into the sky as he was going, when suddenly two men dressed in white stood beside them. “Men of Galilee,” they said, “why do you stand here looking into the sky? This same Jesus, who has been taken from you into heaven, will come back in the same way you have seen him go into heaven.”
To understand this passage, we need to remember that when Jesus commissioned the disciples for ministry, he told them, “As the Father has sent me, so I am sending you” (John 20:21). The task of spreading the news of God’s grace was central to their identity and purpose.
In Acts 1:9-11 when these angels show immediately after Jesus has ascended and say to the disciples, who are looking on, “Why are you staring at the sky? Don’t you know he’s coming back?” we better not be too hard on them. After all, Jesus did tell the disciples earlier in Acts 1 to WAIT on the Holy Spirit before engaging the mission to which he had appointed them.
Why are you staring at the sky? Don’t you know he’s coming back?
However, make no mistake: these angels were heaven-sent agitators to get the disciples going on the task to which they had been called!
Don’t we all tend to wait until we feel like we have something more before we fully commit to trusting God and getting after his mission in our lives?
The encouragement of these angels in Acts 1 reminds every follower of Jesus Christ that, in the Gospel, we have everything we need to engage in God’s mission right now.
Ask yourself: Has God met you with his transforming grace in Jesus Christ?
Do you believe that the Holy Spirit is your power source for ministry? Are you committed to rely continually on Him?
If your answer to those questions is “Yes”, you are “go for launch!”
How might you trust God and live as a witness to Jesus this week? Maybe by speaking a word of encouragement to a co-worker who is feeling worn-out by life. Maybe by sharing the source of your hope with a friend who is walking through a difficult time.
When we rely on the Spirit and seek to engage in God’s mission as a response to the Gospel, God creates a momentum with our lives that can make an eternal impact on the people around us.
God desires to use each of us for His Kingdom purposes. Let’s not wait until the time feels perfect to start living “on mission.”
Jesus is coming back. We’ve gotta have a sense of urgency!