Study: Consider a crucial time when you asked and received help. How did it feel?
Pray: Is there anything that is keeping you from receiving God’s grace? Ask the Lord for the courage to ask!
Serve: Do you know someone who is struggling to receive mercy or forgiveness? How can you help them grow in faith?
The Gospel image is both brutal and tender, revealing God’s saving grace and mercy in the midst of the Passion of the Cross. The good thief (who tradition names Dismas) calls upon the Lord saying, “Jesus, remember me when you come into your kingdom.”
How these words speak to my heart! In a single phrase the King of Kings and Lord of Lords becomes approachable as Christ bridges Heaven and Earth, crushes Hell and invites us to enter into eternal life: “Today you will be with me in paradise!”
The good thief shows both humility and boldness. He knows his sins, and yet he speaks to the Lord with a gentle conviction, asking for a grace that he cannot achieve on his own. His trust inspires us as we acknowledge our own sins and draw near to the one whose death and resurrection saves and sets us free.
May these words strengthen our faith as we call upon the Lord. May they help us to seek Christ before all else as we repent and call upon God’s grace. May we truly say:
Jesus, remember me when you come into your kingdom!
Note: This post was first published on November 14, 2016.