And the criminal said, “Jesus, [please] remember me when You come into Your kingdom!” Jesus said to him, “I assure you and most solemnly say to you, today you will be with Me in Paradise.”
“Grace” – What a powerful word!
I stand in awe and amazement of these two verses. Why? I’m glad you asked. You see, what amazes me is that the criminal on the cross hanging next to Jesus did nothing to deserve the free gift of salvation. He was a criminal. He was being executed for his crimes. He wasn’t a disciple of Jesus and he didn’t multiply one disciple. No, he was a criminal waiting to die.
However something happened in the heart of this man while hanging on the cross next to Jesus. He simply asked Jesus to “please remember me.”
The criminal never prayed a prayer. He didn’t take communion. He didn’t make amends with those he wronged. He didn’t get baptized. He didn’t study the Torah or the scriptures. In reality, Jesus knew full well that the criminal had converted out of plain fear. However, Jesus extended His loving grace to this criminal and offered complete and total forgiveness. Jesus simply said, “Today you will be with Me in paradise.”
I’m not sure where you are or what you may be going through. However I encourage you to accept God’s unconditional grace. He is madly in love with you. There is nothing so bad or so heinous that’s God’s love, grace and forgiveness can’t pardon you. He created you and He loves you!!!
Be Worth Being!
Kevin Burrell has worked in professional baseball as both a player and MLB scout for the past 38 years, and currently serves on staff with the Chicago White Sox as an area scouting supervisor. Kevin was drafted in the 1st round of the 1981 free agent amateur draft (25th selection overall) by the Boston Red Sox, and played ten years of professional baseball with four different organizations. He and his wife, Valerie, live in Sharpsburg, Ga. with their two children.
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