Thursday, May 9, 2013

Ascension Day??? Is that really a holiday?

Ascension Day. Who would have known that it’s a holiday. But here it is indeed. I was thinking of it last night while scrubbing a sink full of dishes. A song kept ringing through my mind that says, “He’s coming for a pure Bride…the Lord is coming for His Bride, make way for the Lord”. Suddenly my heart beat a bit faster, and a smile touched my lips. What an awesome day to celebrate for sure. Most who wander across this post will probably realize what the words mean in the song. But just in case – God frequently has used the analogy of Himself as a bridegroom  and His people as a bride. He loves us deeply. However, He definitely is marrying down. His bride has often been foolish and has chased after other things in spite of His great love. But part of becoming a Christian is that He begins turning your heart toward Him again, away from the things you used to chase after, towards purity… Well, for the sake of time we have to move on quickly. After Jesus died and rose again, a short time later He ascended to heaven. But with His leaving was a promise that He would return for His “bride”, His church.
Considering a pure bride brings lots of thoughts to mind. Bridal magazines filled with the soft, flowing, white dreams of so many. But really most of the time a white dress is only like a shell representing purity, but with something of filthy dirty things inside of the person wearing it. But that isn’t the kind of Bride He is coming for. His bride may not be all fancy and polished on the outside, but He is making her glorious within. I look inside my own heart and mind, feeling the guilt for a moment of what it must be like to stand as unholy and unclean with all the junk inside. But then I delight to think that how He sees me is made new. His word says that He is making all things new through Christ. Pure and right and blameless. Not what we were before. And not due to our own effort of trying and trying and trying, but because Christ has lived and died for us, and now pleads on our behalf to the Father. He changes us from the inside until finally, finally it is seen in outward ways.
Anyways, as I celebrate this day that I have never corporately celebrated before, I rejoice to ponder the reality that the Lord really is coming for His bride. As was His promise, He ascended, but will come back in similar fashion to claim His bride. Delighting to make way for the Lord.

…as Christ also loved the church and gave Himself up for her,  so that He might sanctify her, having cleansed her by the washing of water with the word,  that He might present to Himself the church in all her glory, having no spot or wrinkle or any such thing; but that she would be holy and blameless. Ephesians 5:25-27

 Let us rejoice and be glad and give the glory to Him, for the marriage of the Lamb has come and His bride has made herself ready.”  It was given to her to clothe herself in fine linen, bright and clean; for the fine linen is the righteous acts of the saints. Revelation 19: 7-8

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