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Solemnity of the Lord's Ascension: May 24, 2020

Updated: May 23, 2020

Since I have pleasure of spare times during the period of pandemic, I accepted an invitation from my friend an online financial literacy. He said, in the midst of unpredictability, monetary investments either retirement pension and life insurance plans are highly recommended by financial experts. Most of these investments are of course long term investments. It will take time to pay but the total premium is nothing compared to the benefits that you and your beneficiary will receive. The vision is not only for personal but also for my family so that even if I am no longer in this world I can still support my loved ones. I have the impression that it is too good to be true because I will only have to pay less but receive more. The question now is, among them who is the most reliable so that my investment that might take 10 or more years will not be futile? The answer is of course the one with excellent track record. Nevertheless, every insurance policy is risky but when you grow old, what about if you did not invest? It might be an endless regret so this type of investments only belongs to those who have an attitude of optimism and willing to wage life in the midst of uncertainties.

We are celebrating the Solemnity of the Lord’s Ascension. This particular teaching of the catholic faith is something that is disputable. It is only the bible that attests to it and the world will never have living witnesses who came all the way down from heaven and stand before us to tell us that there is indeed heaven. At the outset, Jesus ascension into heaven is a call for an investment from each one of us. The Acts of the Apostles in the first reading is a brief recollection of the life of Jesus Christ. “I wrote about all what Jesus did from the beginning until the day He was taken up to heaven”. You will be my witnesses to the ends of the earth”. It seems to me that the writer is paving the way for us how to get to heaven and the way is no other than Jesus. The way to heaven is a long and winding road. Nobody has a clue about the road to eternity. However, we are asked to be witnesses. We are invited to invest our life not for twenty years but for a lifetime. The amount of what we will give is nothing compared to value of eternal life. How can you compare mortal life to eternal life? A catholic apologetic once pointed out, hell is a bottomless pit of anguish and regret. It will be an eternal blame for us if we refuse giving our life to God. Heaven only belongs to those who are willing to take risk of their life.

We certainly need prayer to desire heaven. The Letter of Paul to the Ephesians said, “I pray that God may give you Spirit and wisdom and revelation with the eyes of your heart, you will know and hope for to which He has called you”. The kind of prayer that we need is not about to help us understand fully the reality of heaven but for us to love and accept the revelation of Jesus. It is called ‘sensus fidei” which is gift of embracing revelation even if we do not totally understand it. We are not required to understand but to love everything about God for it is in loving that we begin to understand. Perfect understanding will not bring us to heaven but pure love do.

Finally, heaven is not exclusive but inclusive. The gospel has a strong mandate, go therefore and make disciples of all nations. We have the mission to make investors for riches in heaven. We have to teach them plant the seed of faith right now if they wish a bountiful harvest in heaven. Salvation is not for the chosen few but for the entire universe.

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