Friday, March 29, 2013

Faith To See Beyond: Luke 23:42-43

Luke 23:42-43 (New King James Version)
Then he said to Jesus, “Lord, remember me when You come into Your kingdom.”  And Jesus said to him, “Assuredly, I say to you, today you will be with Me in Paradise.”

When I think of the cross, I remember Mary grieving, John at the foot of the cross, the Centurion who stated "surely this WAS the son of God."  I think about who wasn't there.  The scattering of the disciples.  I think of the other thief, who said "If you really are the son of God, save yourself and us."  As if to say, "If God is with you...your situation would look differently.  Prove that God is with you, by fixing this situation.  Then I will believe."  I think of Peter, whose faith faltered when Jesus was arrested.  Even after Jesus returned, I think of Thomas, who said he wouldn't believe until he saw for himself that Jesus was alive.   The people that had believed he was the Messiah, seemed to be grieving that it was "all over."  The kingdom wouldn't come after all.  The Messiah was dead.

But the thief--he showed great faith. He saw beyond the visible.  He was the only one at the cross who said, "WHEN you come into your kingdom."  He looked into the eyes of the Jesus that was dying, and he saw beyond the visible.  He saw beyond that moment.  He knew that Jesus was Messiah AND he would come into his kingdom.  That is great faith.

God, we pray for GREAT vision and faith.  We need to see beyond our current circumstances, beyond what we see with our eyes, beyond what our mind is thinking about "reality," loss and grief.   We pray with supernatural faith, knowing that even when things in the natural look final, devastating, and unchangeable...GOOD IS COMING.  GOD IS WITH US.  NOTHING IS LOST.