5.29.2008

“Time” is one of the most precious, taken for granite, neglected, and misused pieces of our life.  It is really all we have.  This moment right now is all I am guaranteed.  Everyone is constantly marching hastily towards the end.  Regardless of how much or how little we think about it, it is approaching us faster than we would like.

The end comes two ways.  There is an unexpected end which comes abruptly with no notice. (car wreck or accident)  Then there is an anticipated endwhich transpires over time.  (illness, age, ect.)   For those of us who are right with our maker, it really makes no difference which way we go.  Those individuals who have elected to chance it and postpone facing the reality of heaven or hell better pray that they are fortunate to have their end come in an anticipated fashion.

Luke 23:32-43 talks about the two criminals hung on either side of Jesus while he was on the cross.  They both were given the opportunity to face the truth and make a decision.  At that point, regardless of the pain they were having to endure, they were very lucky individuals.  After playing the odds game throughout their life, they were given an opportunity before dying to make the right decision.  One criminal insulted Jesus and took the anger of his circumstances out on Him.  The other criminal acknowledged Jesus as God and stated, ” We are punished justly, because we’re getting back what we deserve for the things we did, but this man has done nothing wrong.” (v.41)  Then, what he requested next sent chills down my spine.  AFTER LIVING A LIFE WORTHY OF DEATH BY CRUCIFIXTION THE CRIMINAL REQUESTED, “JESUS, REMEMBER ME WHEN YOU COME INTO YOUR KINGDOM!” (V.42)

What Jesus said next changed the man from a criminal to a saint. I can’t imagine the peace and release the man must have felt in that moment.  The moment that he heard the words, “Today you will be with me in paradise.” (v.43)

 

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