2 crucified criminals, divided

One of the criminals who hung there hurled insults at him: “Aren’t you the Christ? Save yourself and us!” But the other criminal rebuked him. “Don’t you fear God,” he said, “since you are under the same sentence? We are punished justly, for we are getting what our deeds deserve. But this man has done nothing wrong.” Then he said, “Jesus, remember me when you come into your kingdom.” Jesus answered him, “I tell you the truth, today you will be with me in paradise. Luke 23:39-43

They feared death,
and suffered pain,
– the worst on earth;
but see the gain
when one awakes
to see at last
that Christ is good,
and his own past
acknowledged bad –
deserving judgement
worse than this present
crucifixion;
but Christ is King,
– he turned to Him
to ask for grace
in humble prayer,
and heard he’d share
a glorious kingdom,
for all forgiven!

Not hypocrites

(Matthew 6:1-18)
When we’ve opportunity
for kind acts of charity,
(not to feed our vanity,
or for popularity):
if some note our helpful ways,
may they bring our Father praise.

Do we, in a private place,
seek God’s glory, seek his face?
and when publicly we pray,
still sincere, no proud display
that is trying to impress,
– just transparent godliness.

Fasting, prayer in self-abasement,
not to gain respect, amazement,
but with time for concentration,
focussing our full attention
on our God, and supplication
in repentance, and devotion.

Live in private as outside,
always seeking to abide
by His Word, as in His view:
then what others see is true,
and they know who works in us,
forming humble righteousness.

Where is Christ?

Not on the cross,
Not in the ground, –
Alive!
his powerful help, compassion
can be found.
He knows your heartache:
ask for what you need,
without self-righteousness,
or selfish greed;
he understands what we don’t see,
his mercy, comfort
and support are free.

The poor, happy goblin

A goblin found an elixir,
and drank it in a trice;
– it changed his spiteful core, and made
him really rather nice.
Unshakeable his knowledge now
that he would truly never
completely fully die, instead
he’d somehow live for ever:
with inexhaustable supply
of life – he could not fully die.

The other goblins, they observed
and saw this pleasant change:
– ‘a passing phase’, they thought – a bit
embarrassing, and strange.

But when they found he could not join
in unkind schemes and sneaky games,
they got annoyed, and hit his head,
and snarled out nasty names;
they thought that such refusing
was actually accusing:
disturbed in their complacent ease
of mischief-making as they please.

‘You don’t support our dubious rules,
but we can make you, you must choose,
and if you don’t agree to do
as told, we’ll smack you ’til your blue.’

But even when they warned they’d kill,
he couldn’t re-corrupt his will,
or vomit out the mystic draught
that had implanted peace of heart –
when pain complete, fresh life would start.

Oh, poor goblin, yet not poor,
but happy, free of hate, secure.