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Featured Window

Window of the Month
Our Lady of Grace, Dearborn Heights, Michigan

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Building Name: Third Reformed Church

City: Holland

Window Shape: 2 (rectangle)

Subject/Title of Window: Ascension

Brief Description of Subject: Ascension
This window calls upon us to praise and magnify the risen and resigning lord who by his earthly ministry, brought forgiveness and new life to his people.

Notice how this last window leads us to just that attitude. All earthly manifestations have been done anyway. In the other windows we have many reminders of this earth. Mary, shepherds the manger, Joseph, the ass and the desert, the rabbis in the temple, John the Baptist and the Jordan River, the multitudes on the Mount, the huge stone and the thorn in Gethsemane the solider and the empty tomb at the Resurrection. All these remind us that this is the story of the earthly pilgrimage of our Lord. Now, in the Ascension there are no earthly figures, no reminders of earth, no symbols of the sufferings through which He has gone. He is surrounded by a cloud and behind His head is a great light. Blue, the liturgical color of heaven, is at the base of the picture.

The feeling that Jesus Christ is heaven bound is again enhanced by the outstretched arms pointed upward. There are other rather famous representations of the Ascension which show the disciples looking up to Him in wonder and longing and the hands of the Master extending up to Him in wonder and longing and the hands of the Master extended in benediction. But in this window even these manifestations of his earthly life and ministry are left out.  That moment is represented here, is already past. The farewells have been said the blessing given, the last obligation fulfilled. Notice that the red outer garment seems to be loosed and about to fall away revealing only white robes of purity and truth and glory. The figure of Jesus is clad with a red rob of martyrdom in each of the three proceeding pictures signifying the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world. But now that is a part of eternal history. All is accomplished and finished. Now the mantle of sacrifice can fall away leaving us, as Christians, to adore and praise the son of God who took it upon Himself accomplished His purpose and laid it aside to resume His rightful place at the right hand of God.

In the shield at the base of the window we see an eagle flying into the sun. This is one of the traditional symbols of the Ascension kept alive by the 103rd Psalms where we read, thy youth is renewed like the eagles. (Verse 5) Myth has it when the eagle becomes old and its eyes dim, it flies as high as possible and looks into the sun. Then it plunges thrice into a fountain of crystal clear water and emerges with perfect eyesight and renewed youth. So likewise did our Lord, after lying in the tomb, come forth with a glorified body.

When we contemplate these things our minds and imaginations soar with the eagle to the heights to which Christ has ascended to the glory of His name.

As we look at this ascending Christ our hearts should be filled with the thankfulness and praise which the disciples felt those first days. Pure devotion sees first this One person who has accomplished our salvation and whose spirit may fill us if only we ask. And as we continue to look we realize the responsibility that rests upon us. We are now given the Holy Spirit so that our hands and feet, our lips are given to the Master to do his work on Earth. The red mantle of sacrifice and martyrdom which he has worn is loosened and has come upon our shoulders as of old the mantle of Elijah fell upon Elisha. Let us accept our responsibility to Him and receiving the power of the Holy Spirit and His eternal Provence, let us carry on His work.


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