"And he said unto Jesus, Lord, remember me when You come into Your kingdom." (Luke 23:42).
"If there ever were dreams that were lofty and noble, these were my dreams from the start. And the hopes for life's best were the hopes that I harbored deep in my heart. But, my dreams turned to ashes; my castles all crumbled; my fortunes turned to loss. So I wrapped them all in the rags of my life, and laid them at His cross. Something beautiful; something good. All my confusion He understood. All I had to offer Him was brokenness and strife, but He made (and is yet making) something beautiful of my life."
These words were written by Bill & Gloria Gaither, but they express the sentiments of millions who have been touched by the healing power of Jesus through the ages.
They certainly could be the very words of the dying thief on the cross as he entered Paradise with the Savior. I know for sure they are my words as I reflect upon my journey with Jesus thus far. And they can be your words, too. As the old song says, "It is no secret what God can do; what He's done for others He will do for you."
The dying thief prayed, "Lord, remember me when You come into Your Kingdom." And Jesus did so. But what exactly was the fellow asking Jesus to do? Did he merely want the Lord to think about him from time to time? No, not all all. The word remember literally means "to put back together."
When something is dismembered, it is torn apart and broken. Such was this thief's wasted life. He was asking Jesus to "put his life back together" -- believing that Jesus would be able to do so in the Kingdom. This was an ultimate act of faith, for the ruined man was dying at that moment. And Jesus assured him, "Today, you shall be with Me in Paradise."
Your life may be broken and ruined, fragmented and wasted -- but Jesus can put it back together! And He will do so if you but ask Him.
Yes, it will take some time, but it will all be worth it. And in the process you will walk with Him in Paradise; not just in the sweet by and by, but even here on earth; every day as you listen to His word, and follow His will.
Jesus remembers you.