Thursday, March 3, 2011

Cross Collection

A comment was made in this house recently about my cross collection.

“My what?” I asked.

“Your cross collection.”

I hadn't ever set out to have one, but as I moved through my house, this is what I found:

Hanging above my office computer is a carved wooden cross, which I purchased to support business in Israel.

Two metal crosses given to my husband and me shortly before he retired from Gateway church lie on a table in the den.

Above the back door hangs a cross of nails bestowed on me years ago by a courageous paraplegic friend.

A hand created embossed ceramic piece graces the kitchen. It at some point has had a bad fall, but because I loved this present from a friend so much, I patched it.

A crystal cross near where I have my time with the Lord serves as a focal point in preparation for Lent. Also a gift.

Upstairs, I found two wooden crosses like this one. Especially precious for they were bequeathed to us when our children were born by a since departed spiritual mentor.

A hand crocheted cross which serves as a bookmark.

A cross plaque. Again a present from a dear friend.

This is what I discovered without even looking very hard. I never set out to have a cross collection, but I do and so many of them are gifts from friends.

The hymn, “When I Survey the Wondrous Cross,” has been called by some “the greatest hymn in the English language.’ Written in 1707 by Isaac Watts, God has used the powerful lyrics to minister to generations. Here are the first, third and fourth verses:

When I survey the wondrous cross on which the Prince of glory died,
My richest gain I count but loss, and pour contempt on all my pride.

See, from His head, His hands, His feet, sorrow and love flow mingled down;
Did e’er such love and sorrow meet, or thorns compose so rich a crown?

Were the whole realm of nature mine, that were a present far too small:
Love so amazing, so divine, demands my soul, my life, my all.

Far from being merely decorative objects, what has turned out to be a cross in almost every room reminds our family constantly of the powerful love of God in sacrificing Jesus. And the crosses also serve to call us to surrender nothing less than our whole lives to Him. No, I didn’t set out to have this collection, but I, for one,  need these symbols of Jesus’ sacrifice.

When I surrendered my life to the Lord thirty years ago, for a long time, I wore a small gold cross around my neck. I did so, to remind myself that I belonged to Jesus. My life was not my own.

Today, lest I forget…I’m faced with tangible promptings in my home, because “love so amazing, so divine, demands my soul, my life, my all.”

You are not your own; you were bought at a price. 1 Corinthians 6:19-20

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