Absence conjurers up many different emotions in our minds. They can be stressful, the stuff of nightmares, when we dream that something really important is happening and we are not there. Disappointing, when someone has promised to be there, do something for us and not turned up. Lead to loneliness, when we were so looking forward to someones company and they have had to cancel. Grief, when the one we love dies and appears to be no longer there for us. Give that one time!
But absence can speak about trust, real trust that we have for others and they for us. That is the trust that we share when one person or a group of people leave another to undertake a task and do that with confidence.
Trust grows from knowledge and understanding. When we see in another all the qualities that that we have hoped for, then our relationship begins to grow. And grow it will to the point where one no longer needs the other.
Ascension speaks of that trust, where the day to day ministry of Jesus has left such an impact on the World, where the Cross becomes the Eastering in us, Resurrection that liberation. As St Augustine says: “We become what we have received”.
Ascension is the Trust that sends us in the World to be that Jesus, not looking back to see if we are getting it right, but striding forward getting things wrong, making mistakes but being that Jesus to the best of our ability.
And God loves us for that!
Just a thought!