And he said unto Jesus, Lord, remember me when thou comest into thy kingdom. And Jesus said unto him, Verily I say unto thee, To day shalt thou be with me in paradise.
This passage of scripture takes place as Jesus was hanging upon the cross in great pain.
I think we have all been in those painful places in life when we were suffering great agony at others hands. It was in the midst of just such a situation that Jesus and this man, being crucified with Him, developed a relationship that would turn into paradise and last an eternity.
When we are suffering at others hands we often look for someone to understand us and sympathize with us. If they don’t want to do that we drive them away and let them hang in their own mess. This was not the attitude Jesus took. At the height of His suffering and humiliation He finds one more person hanging onto Him and wanting something from Him. Jesus never went into how He was being unjustly crucified or how that this man with Him was getting what he deserved. Jesus just immediately opens His heart to the poor suffering man and solidifies an eternal relationship with him. That relationship turned into paradise for this man who was suffering for his own choices.
The next time we find ourselves suffering at others hands we should take that as a sign that there is some poor suffering soul around me that I need to minister the love of God to. At the height of my pain I should look for someone to develop a Godly relationship with.
Matthew 22:39 And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself.