Be sure of this: I am with you always, even to the end of the age. Matthew 28:20
The last words that Jesus spoke to His followers before He returned to His Father’s right hand in heaven are found in Matthew 28:20. There are a lot of truths that Christ could have spoken as His final earthly words. He could have reminded them of His love or His holiness. He could have emphasized His forgiveness or His goodness. But He chose to leave them with one final reminder of His continual and eternal presence.
It’s a beautiful image, isn't it? Think of what His beloved disciples had been through with Jesus. They had seen Him arrested, beaten and crucified. They had buried His body and mourned His death, only to see Him come alive just as He had promised. He had appeared to them in the upper room, allowing them to kiss His cheeks and see His scars. What must they have been feeling as they watched Him ascend into the clouds? Fear? Worry? Grief? Loss? Probably all of these. And then came the promise… "Be sure of this: I am with you always."
Jesus continues to proclaim the promise of His presence to anyone who will listen and believe in Him. We all respond to His continual presence in different ways. Some might fear it. Others might have learned to abide and live in His presence daily. Many, I suspect, believe in the truth of His presence but ignore it in daily living. In other words, many know it to be true but haven’t yet figured out how to experience the glory and joy of Christ’s presence each and every day.
How do we make His presence the focal point of our hearts? As we go to work, raise our families, grocery shop, clean our houses, and all of the other daily tasks that make up our lives—how do we enjoy His presence here? It is a wonderful truth that Jesus can be found in our laundry rooms, kitchens, back porches, classrooms, and offices and boardrooms. He is with us always. He cares about the details, both big and small. Why? Because Jesus wants our whole lives to be about Him. And when we learn to live to this end, our lives will take on new meaning.
Dear Father, Thank You for reminding me that Christ is always with me. Please help me to believe this not only in theory, but also in reality today. Teach me to enjoy Your presence. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.