April 05, 2022
Bishop Ruben Saenz Jr continues the Cross Walk Lenten Devotional series by contemplating the 11th Station of the Cross - Jesus Receives a Criminal in Paradise.
A King crucified on a cross on a hill surrounded by two criminals and a mocking crowd is out of place, isn’t it? But then, this King was always out of place, wasn’t he? This King, this Messiah, this Son of God, was not found in the comforts of a lavish palace, instead this King roams the countryside and roads, passing through small dusty villages, and the hedges of society searching for, preaching and ministering to the lost and lonely and broken and declared that those who suffered, hungered and mourned are blessed.
This King on a cross on a hill is not out of place, he is where he has always been. That is, in the company of those that are out of place in society. On the cross, he offers unexpected grace, another possibility, his Paradise, and a place in his Kingdom. Friends, if this shocks and upsets us, then maybe we’re the ones that are out of place.
Today, we pray for God’s grace to be more like our King, that is, to be in the places with others that are out of place in society.