In a couple previous posts (shortly before Christmas) I wrote about a parishioner named Lyle; a saint of this congregation that went to meet Jesus. I won’t talk about him here but I do want to show you something; Lyle’s cross. I talked about these crosses before; that he made dozens of them (They are 5 inches by 3 1/2 inches). He made a number for the nursing home and the hospital. He made a bunch for the people at Salem and Belmont. And of course he made them for his family. The one pictured above is one of three that I have. This one serves as a pectoral cross that I wear in worship from time to time.
I have other pectoral crosses that I wear as well: I have a pectoral cross that my parents gave me for my ordination that is silver. I like that one because is very beautiful and reminds me of the faith my parents passed down to me and the support they gave me as I went through seminary. I have a old wooden cross necklace that I got from my grandma (who died last Feb.) that wear I from time to time. That one, of course, reminds me of grandma and the faith that she passed down to me. I have two cross necklaces made of olive wood that were made in Jerusalem. These remind me of our brothers and sisters in Christ around the world; that the church is not just located in Jackson, MN. And then I have Lyle’s cross. This one, of course, reminds me of Lyle and the faith that he passed down to me.
All of the crosses I wear are special to me and remind me of various people in my life that have paved the way for me. But one thing that I did not say (but I hope was understood) is that the cross, of course, reminds me of what Jesus did FOR YOU and FOR ME. Formerly a symbol of death; it is now a symbol of hope. I wear these crosses as a reminder to me and others who see them of why we truly gather together on Sunday morning to worship. I wear my other (smaller) cross necklaces to proclaim that same message out in the world from Monday to Saturday. Some people wear cross necklaces because they are a fashion statement. But whatever the motivation for a particular person, when I see that cross, I am reminded of the life we have in Christ.
So I thank those who have paved the way for me and most of all, I give thanks and praise to God our Father through Jesus Christ, for paving the way to eternal life; carrying us across the Great Divide.