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August, 2021

n THOUGHT FOR THE MONTH

We are all the same I KNOW that the weariness and uncertainties of the last 18 months and the tragic impact on so many people have led many to ask: “what is life all about?” or “does it all have a meaning or a destination?” I remember being asked as a 17-year-old: “if I died tonight would I go to heaven?” That simple question had a profound impact on me. So, I was intrigued recently when I was sent a you tube clip of a speaker using his imagination to describe the conversation at the gates of heaven just after one of the two thieves who died next to Jesus found himself there. After a lot of discussions amongst the angels as to his lack of qualifications or religious practice or good deeds, they asked him on what basis he was there, to which the thief replied: “The man on the middle cross said I could come”. You may

recall the story in Luke’s gospel chapter 29 v 39-43, the thief turned to Jesus on the cross and said “Jesus, remember me when you come into your kingdom”. A very simple and direct prayer and Jesus gave him a profound answer: “Today, you will be with me in paradise”. This is story goes to the heart of the good news, the gospel and is really worthy of our reflection. Was Jesus making a special case for the thief next to him or is he really saying to us, you are all the same and that is the way you all need to come to God. If we say by our own merit we deserve to come to heaven, then aren’t we saying some are better than others. We have become the judge, some of us are good we say and because we did good things we should come but that person who upset me or hurt me or did

bad things they don’t deserve to come. Who can be good enough to really deserve heaven? We all know that very often we are selfish and live for ourselves not to the same degree perhaps but, if we are honest, we know we are all the same, like the thief none of us would pass the test. What the thief saw in his moment of desperation on the cross was that the man next to him was innocent, and yet had been condemned to death. How much he understood we do not know, but what was happening on the middle cross was the innocent one was dying in the place of the guilty so that the guilty one could go free. He paid the price for his freedom. Jesus said to the thief, what he says to us: “You can come to me, today.” We don’t need to wait until we are at the doors of death, none of us

Tony Davies Leader, Waterbrook Church

know when that will be anyway. This reminds me of another thing that Jesus said that is so relevant to us today: “Come to me all you who are weary and burdened and I will give you rest” Matthew 11: 28.

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Fishponds Voice August 2021  

Local newspaper packed with news, views and advertising for the residents and businesses of the Greater Fishponds area. This month, details...

Fishponds Voice August 2021  

Local newspaper packed with news, views and advertising for the residents and businesses of the Greater Fishponds area. This month, details...

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