I often wonder how the apostles and disciples felt when Jesus had finally physically left them. It seems to me that it must have been a very sad day for them, sort of like a roller-coaster ride. And I wonder what Jesus' thoughts must have been as he was about to return to the Father? On a human level, I think Jesus knew that he had given his all to this sacred mission and that nothing more could be given, except the Gift of the Holy Spirit Who would remind us of all Jesus had done and said. In human terms, he must have felt a great sense of accomplishment. He also must have felt a deep joy as he anticipated returning to paradise.
Those he left, once more witnessed a miracle that no one else has ever seen. They kept staring at the sky, most probably in wonder and awe. They had just previously been commissioned by Jesus to witness to him to the ends of the earth. It took angels to tell them to stop procrastinating and get on with their lives. They were told that they would see Jesus again, returning in the same way they had seen him leave.
We know that the Early Church at first, had expected Jesus to return soon, within their lifetime. As with all of their experiences in following him, they had to patiently tweak their hopes as they realized that the time of Jesus' second coming was unpredictable.
All Christians and Roman Catholics believe that Jesus will come again and the dead will be raised . From time to time, news reports start the rumor that someone has figured out the exact day and time of Jesus' return, but so far, none of these pseudo-prophecies have proved to be true. One thing is true: Jesus Christ has shown humankind the immeasurable love that God has for each of us. He has patiently revealed this and through his Ascension into heaven, he consoles us with the knowledge that one day, we too will be there as he is, body and soul.
I need not be afraid of his second coming. I need only be assured that he loves me and asks me to witness to his love by the ways I think, act and speak. One day at a time, I move closer to my own entry into paradise. This will not be frightening or something to dread. It will be a time of great joy, supported by the human sense of accomplishment that I too have completed the mission God has asked of me. Come, Lord Jesus, Come!