“Assuredly, I say to you, today you will be with Me in Paradise” Luke 23:43. Jesus spoke these comforting words to one of the thieves who was being crucified with Him. This criminal had the good sense to use one of his last breaths to say to Jesus, “Lord, remember me when You come into Your kingdom.” All the bad, good, and indifferent things this man had done didn’t even enter into the conversation. The only thing this guy wanted at the end of his life was to be remembered by the Master.
Today is a paradoxically sad and joyous day for my family. My sister-in-law, Jean Elliott Anderson, transitioned into Glory just a few hours ago. My fondest memory of Jean was her genuine smile. She literally lit up any room with it. Something else that was as evident as her smile was her genuine love for Jesus. Whether at home or on vacation, Jean never missed her quiet time with her Lord. We will miss her tremendously, but I’m sure she wouldn’t trade her new residence for anything. You see, today, Jesus’ words to the thief on the cross became real for Jean. I can just see Him smiling at her, reaching out His hand to grasp hers, and saying, “Hey Jean, today you will be with Me in Paradise.”
Jean’s times with Jesus will never end now. She’s rejoicing around the throne of God with her beloved husband Supe, her mom, her dad, and all her other friends and relatives who preceded her in that journey. We’ll pause to celebrate her life at her homegoing celebration in a few days, and then we’ll get back to the business of living, but not without taking with us the richness our lives have gained because we know the testimony of the life of Jean Elliott Anderson. Like Jean, we can be more dedicated to our own quiet times. Like Jean, we can smile and laugh more. Like Jean, we can be dedicated to our family, our friends, and our church. And like Jean, we can look forward to one day when it’s our “today,” the day we’ll hear Jesus say to us, “Hey Daughter [or] Hey Son, today you will be with Me in Paradise.”
©2017 Sharon Norris Elliott. Feel free to forward this devotion in its entirety, including this copyright line. Leave comments, ask questions, read past devotions, or subscribe to receive these devotions daily in your e-mail at www.sanewriter.wordpress.com. Also, periodically check in at www.LifeThatMatters.net to see what’s going on in the ministry.
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