The Ascension, usually celebrated the fortieth day after Easter Sunday was celebrated the following Sunday here in San Antonio. This is the celebration of Christ ascending to the heavens in the midst of the apostles. It was last Sunday and this Sunday is Pentecost. Pentecost, as most of you know, is when the Holy Spirit came upon the Apostles as described in Acts:2.

OK, enough history lesson already. What does this have to do with us? Our lives.

UP: Looking up, gearing up and opening up.

Most of us run around with our heads in the sand, unprepared and withdrawn. It’s OK, life tends to push us in that direction. We pile things on our plate in an effort to feel accomplished and provide for our families. Before long we’re bogged down in it. We take a step back to look at the big picture only to realize that we have truly accomplished nothing. And we’ve failed to provide the one thing our family needs most… Ourselves.

Look Up
Like the apostles during the Ascension, spend more time looking to Christ. Sometimes just going outside and looking up can help you put your priorities in order. Get some perspective. That’s no accident. He sees you and speaks to your heart. Actually looking up is quite the literal translation. Sometimes, we just need to quit focusing on ourselves, the money, the whatever and look to Christ. When the apostles saw Christ ascend toward the heavens, I gaurantee you they didn’t have anything else at all in their minds other than awe. I can’t even imagine. And this is the world we live in. It’s full of inspiration and awe. Find it. Find Christ in your little corner of the world and look toward him.

Gear Up
Take time to prepare yourself for life. I know that sounds a little grandiose, so let’s break it down a little. Everyday is a prayer. We are the Word of God. How will you speak for Him today? Take a second each morning and ask Him for a little courage, wisdom, clarity. He’ll be there and it will FREAK YOU OUT. You may not hear what you want to hear. But it’s not about you. When He prepared the disciples to present The Word to all the people gathered around that house, do you think they were ready. Heck no. They were scared to death. They’re just people, like you and me. The last thing they wanted to do was make speeches to hundreds of people. And in languages they couldn’t even speak?!?!?

I doubt that tounges of fire will light upon your head tomorrow morning. However, all you have to do to be ready to truly achieve is to ask Him what you should be achieving and how. He’ll prepare you. Get ready.

Open Up
This is the hardest one for me personally. I’m naturally introverted and enjoy time alone. I guess that’s why I’m so at peace with the horses. But, that’s no excuse. It’s our job to spread the good news.

Yes, THE good news is Christ’s Resurrection. But, your good news on a daily basis may be something else. And no, it’s not the latest town gossip. Just because you were first to know does not make it good news. 😉 There’s a fine line between opening up and not missing a good chance to shut the hell up.

Recently a jury summons arrived for me. I went yesterday, all day, and got picked. (but that’s a whole other rant) While I was there, I made myself just walk up and speak to two total strangers. Those of you who know me know that this is crazy talk for me. But it’s something I’ve been working on. And He rewarded me. One of the young men I spoke with was a computer engineer and I checked out his ASUS and we talked tech for quite a while. Enjoyable.

Next I chose an older gentleman figuring that the young guy with the sweet laptop was a subconscious cop out. Well, Wilson was recently employed by AMD and now works for Sony! He maintains the fabrication equipment used in the production of microprocessors. Score. We alked tech for a while, too.

As I reflected on this, I could not figure what His purpose was. Had I elivered whatever it was I was supposed to deliver to these men. Should I have mentioned something specific. Nope. Now I realize that the whole purpose was for Him to give me confidence in stepping out of my comfort zone. He opened me up. Just a little, but who knows what’s next.

Get out there and open up. You are a treasure. Someone deserves to feel your greatness. You deserve to feel the greatness of someone else. You never have the pleasure if you stay in the corner with your head down.

Further Reading:
– Be Somebody!
– Advocacy


5 thoughts on “Up

  1. I won’t go into details, but a high senior in Hallettsville passed away over the weekend. Matthew and I have the priviledge of knowing his parents and attended the rosary last night. Last night as I was sitting there praying and listening to stories about this remarkable young man, I could not help but think about God’s purpose for him and in turn God’s purpose for me. Your post today reminds me of what each of us is called to do and where we can start to perform God’s work. For me the opening up has always been easier than remembering to looking up in all situations. Thanks for the post. I think I needed it today. Much Love to you and Tonni! -Lace

  2. James, I love this post! This is so true and it is amazing how rewarding it is to actually open up and learn about someone else. Thanks for the wisdom and the encouragement to step out!

  3. james i may or may not have taught you anything about roping, but everytime i sit down to catch up on your blog your messages hit me right in the gut. i’m often with your dad when he stops to talk to someone he does’nt even know for 20 mins. i wonder what in the hell is doing talking to that guy. i’m going to work on that.thanks for the post and tell your pretty wife hello. love arlen p.s. i’m stepping out of the box with that four letter word. working on that also.

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