“Jesus answered him, ‘Truly I tell you, today you will be with me in paradise.'” Luke 23:43
“All our infirmities, whatever they are, are just opportunities for God to display his gracious work in us.” C.H. Spurgeon
- This is the day the Lord has set aside for this truth to resonate in your spirit. Take a long, deep breath. As you exhale, push away the thoughts, busyness, and worries from the day. Give your next few moments to Jesus.
- Open up your Bible to Luke 23:40-43. Today, we are going to read about how you can’t disqualify yourself from God’s love. Here, you’ll read that Jesus restores the broken and sinful heart of a criminal as he faces his death sentence. How much more does he want to restore your heart at this moment, mama!?!
Have you ever read stories of the disciples doing the opposite of what Jesus said and wondered, “How could you? Jesus is LITERALLY right there with you!?!”
Sometimes I think it should have been easier for them to live Christ-filled lives than for me because they physically walked with Jesus daily. Jesus told Peter he would deny him three times in a single evening, and Peter did! It’s easy for me to “tsk-tsk” Peter and not find myself in the narrative.
Mama, let me be real with you—I love Jesus with all my heart. For many years, I have climbed out of bed at 5 a.m. to pray for my day, my family, and lay down every part of my life before my Lord. Often, by 10 a.m., my third cup of coffee has worn off, I’ve taken back control of every part of my life and already picked up a few offenses and complaints. I’m the lady who gets shocked Peter can deny Jesus three times in an evening, yet I can deny Him three times in less than an hour in the context of my mind, marriage, or as a mom.
Jesus wasn’t trying to stop Peter. He predicted Peter’s denial so that when Peter heard the rooster crow and the feelings of shame and disappointment threatened to crush him, he would remember that intimate moment with Jesus.
Mama, do you remember the words Jesus left with Peter on the worst night of both of their lives? He said, “I’ve prayed for you.” Jesus was heading to a torturous death, and He told Peter his life was valuable.
Our God is the God of restoration. There is nothing you have done or could do that could disqualify you from His love. In fact, as Jesus hung on the cross the next day, He restored the criminal hanging beside him in their last moments of life. You can’t mess up bigger than Jesus can love, mama.
When you feel the weight of regret, shame, fear, failure, or hurt, remember Jesus. Come back to Him, and you will find yourself. Your purpose will not be found in being the perfect mom or the perfect anything. Your purpose is found solely in Jesus. He loves you. If you will let Him be Lord of your life, He will do greater things than you could ever dream or imagine.
Let’s pray: Father, thank you for your love that covers a multitude of sins. Help me to place everything weighing me down at Your feet. Restore me according to Your love, not according to what I deserve. Thank you, Lord, that You are always good, faithful, loving, and kind. I put my hope and trust in You. Amen.
Blessings and Love,
Luke 22:32-34 – “‘But I have prayed for you, Simon, that your faith may not fail. And when you have turned back, strengthen your brothers.’ But he replied, ‘Lord, I am ready to go with you to prison and to death.’ Jesus answered, ‘I tell you, Peter, before the rooster crows today, you will deny three times that you know me.’”
Luke 22:54-62 – “Then seizing him, they led him away and took him into the house of the high priest. Peter followed at a distance. And when some there had kindled a fire in the middle of the courtyard and had sat down together, Peter sat down with them. A servant girl saw him seated there in the firelight. She looked closely at him and said, ‘This man was with him.’ But he denied it. ‘Woman, I don’t know him,’ he said. A little later someone else saw him and said, ‘You also are one of them.’ ‘Man, I am not!’ Peter replied. About an hour later another asserted, ‘Certainly this fellow was with him, for he is a Galilean.’ Peter replied, ‘Man, I don’t know what you’re talking about!’ Just as he was speaking, the rooster crowed. The Lord turned and looked straight at Peter. Then Peter remembered the word the Lord had spoken to him: ‘Before the rooster crows today, you will disown me three times.’ And he went outside and wept bitterly.”
Luke 23:42-43 – “Then he said, ‘Jesus, remember me when you come into your kingdom.’ Jesus answered him, ‘Truly I tell you, today you will be with me in paradise.’”
Matthew 16:25 – “For whoever wants to save their life will lose it, but whoever loses their life for me will find it.”
Questions to Ponder
- In what ways would you behave or interact differently today if you were not carrying hurt, anger, frustration, or a sense of obligation?
- What kind of difference might you see in your household if freedom and forgiveness were easy to come by?
Follow Jesus’ example today. When you feel frustrated, hurt, or angry with someone (including yourself!), take a moment to stop and pray for them.