Coffee with the Man on the Middle Cross
Each morning when I get up the coffee pot is already full of hot, rich coffee because my husband knows that I like to start my morning with Jesus and coffee. My routine is to sit in my sun room with coffee, read, pray, and journal. Not always in that order, but those are the things I want to accomplish before I start the day. In what ever order it happens, I want to start my day giving praise to Jesus for what he has done for me, given me, provided for me and then begin learning more about him. And, a nice hot, fresh, cup of coffee just makes it that much better.
I love to share my coffee with Jesus. I love that as I continue to learn more about Him, I am able to see more clearly just how much he loves me. Several times in the past month I have heard, "Jesus will never love you more than he does right now." I have heard it on podcasts, in studies, in songs. I think He is trying to help me really see that he is what I need and nothing else.
As I was studying this week I came across a YouTube video of Alistair Begg's sermon, "The Man on the Middle Cross Said I Could Come." If you have never seen it, the link to the video is below, you should have some coffee and watch it. It made me think of myself as a sinner in a totally different way. It made me see my humanness a little differently. It made me remember, more vividly, even, the sacrifice Jesus made for me on the cross. Maybe it was because we had just celebrated Easter and the emotions of baptism, and family, and Jesus sacrifice were high, but it made me want to know Jesus even more closely. It made me love His great grace even more than I already did. It made this man, yet fully God, seem even more real to me.
During his sermon, Begg shares what must have been going through the mind of the thief on the cross as he enters into heaven. I have often thought about what that day, moment, will look like. I think about the song by Mercy Me, "I Can Only Imagine". Will I cry? Will I even be able to speak? Will I fall to my knees? Will I be overcome with worship? Maybe I will do each of these things, I am not sure, but what I do know is that when I get there everything will be made right. Although I think I will have a lot of questions for Jesus, I am beginning to believe that I will not have any questions when I get there because God will make everything clear to me.
But what about the thief on the cross? He didn't even know Jesus. He had made fun of Jesus. Yet, he ended up in heaven and only because Jesus said he could come.
Think about your life right now. Do you know you will end up in heaven? Do you know where you will spend eternity? Have you been invited into heaven by our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ? If you can't answer these questions with certainty, you are very much like the thief on the cross.
The greatest news and testimony of God's great grace is that all you have to do is look to the Man hanging on the middle cross. You are the man hanging next to Him. You may not have committed murder. You may not have cheated, lied, stolen, been a jerk. But you have sinned and God counts all our sins as being the same. You are a sinner. A thief on a cross. Because of this sinful life you have lived, you don't deserve any grace from God. You don't deserve His forgiveness. You don't deserve His mercies. You don't deserve His love. But this amazing God loves you more now than he ever will.
To receive this free grace, Jesus does not ask you to do anything for him, just to believe in him. He doesn't ask you to write books about him. He doesn't ask you to preach sermons, feed the hungry, give money to the poor. He only asks that you believe, even if it is the littlest bit, in order to receive his grace. And because of this belief, this faith that He does have the greatest love for you and does care for you, and does have a plan for you, you will live in eternity because He said you could come.
All the thief on the cross had to do was believe that Jesus was the Christ and he that is what he did. So, when he took his last breath while hanging there on the cross, he was instantly in the midst of God. The angels asked him why he was there. He couldn't answer. They asked him how he got there. He didn't have time before his last breath, to figure that out. All he knew was that the Man that hung on the middle cross, the one that proclaimed to be the King, said he would live with Him in eternity.
The thief simply had to believe. He had heard the rumors. Have you? He had seen the followers. Have you? He had watched the Man in the middle take the beatings, yet not surrender. Have you? The thief believed. Do you?
Don't wait. Look to your side, see the Man on the middle cross with his loving eyes, his arms open wide, his peace and forgiveness. Accept Him today. Ask Him to be your Lord and Savior. He will know where your heart is if this is all done in silence. He will know where your heart is if you choose to do this with a Pastor, friend, husband, mother. God already knows the plans he has for you. The plans to see you in heaven because He, the Man on the middle cross said you could be there.
You don't need coffee at all for this step. Simply ask Him. Do it now, don't hesitate! Say yes to the Man on the middle cross.
To view "The Man on the Middle Cross", click here: https://youtu.be/k8EC8KpxLd8