The Greatest Symbol of Unfairness That Exists
You see them everywhere.
Some wear it as an ornament around the neck.
Occasionally you can spot it at the side of the road where there’s been a fatal accident.
Some people wear t-shirts with this symbol. I’ve been in homes where an entire wall is devoted to them.
Big ones. Little ones. They’re made of fabric, wood, barbed wire, all sorts of materials. They range from the plain and simple to the very ornate. You’ve probably already guessed that I’m talking about the symbol of the cross.
The cross means different things to different people, and you don’t have to look far to spot one.
But does the symbol of the cross get in your heart and prick your conscience? I’m want to be honest with you, so be gentle with me.
Most of the time, seeing a cross has little effect on me, if I even notice it. I see them, but I seldom notice them, ya know? If I saw someone wearing a necklace with an electric chair or a noose, I’m reasonably certain that it would make a strong impression on me.
Perhaps it’s that we see so many crosses, it’s become ‘common’. Maybe we overlook it the in the same way we overlook fingerprints on a light switch or that dent that’s been on our car for four years?
What would happen if we began noticing crosses?
Would that help us remember who we really are? Who we are called to be?
Would focusing on the cross shine a light on behaviors and habits in our lives that do not please God?
After all, that’s what made the cross of Christ necessary. We broke God’s law and were separated from him by our sin. God’s way of bringing us back to him was the way of the cross.
How would it affect you if the next cross you saw was the one being carried by Christ himself? When he looked into your eyes, what would he say? What would he call on you to sacrifice?
Years ago, our family was on retreat in the Texas hill country with several members of our church. Everyone was gathering for the evening devotional. My husband and I scanned the crowd looking for our girls. I found our younger daughter sitting with a friend, singing, “My cross I’ll carry ’til I see Jesus.” I smiled and waved.
Mark spotted the older one, seated a bit away from the group. She was staring at a huge, eight-foot, wooden cross just outside the pavilion. She looked so serious. The sun was setting, and it was a beautiful scene, but what moved my husband’s heart was our daughter’s focus. My husband watched tearfully and wondered, what crosses would our girls be called to bear in life?
We talked about it later that evening in our cabin. He shared a scripture that kept running through his head, “If any man comes after me, he must deny himself, take up his cross and follow me.”
Would our girls be adequately prepared when their trials came? Were we setting a good example?
Where would they go when the troubles of this life came?
Were we showing them that the Bible has the answers?
Would they have the wisdom to turn to God when they needed help?
Would they run to him when life treated them unfairly or would they blame him and shake their fists at him?
Let me assure you that having children definitely multiplies one’s prayer life.
The meaning of the cross in your life
There is so much more to the cross than an icon for jewelry or t-shirts. We can read the story of Calvary and the cross Jesus carried and know that he understands unfairness. We know that he understands struggle and sacrifice.
Imagine the impact on your life if you prayed for guidance each time you saw a cross. How would it change your life and the lives of those you hold dearest? Picture yourself making some of the changes God is placing on your heart.
How much sweeter will life be when you let the message and power of the cross bring about a transformation?
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