Short and Sweet:

Tips for living the abundant life

Another Coffee for the March 2002 Deep Cove Crier

"Is Life to you like a Cross-word Puzzle?"

Some people love cross-word puzzles.  Others get cross at the mention of them.  One of the puzzles that fascinates me is how often the cross is planted at the crossroads of everyday conversation.  Everywhere I look, I find cross-words.  Lawyers cross-examine their witnesses.  Children sit cross-legged in gym classes.  Thieves double-cross each other at a moment’s notice.  Referees penalize hockey players for ‘cross-checking each other.’  Political and military leaders warn their enemies against ‘crossing the line’.  Since September 11th, I have crossed the border five different times.  Courageous soldiers are awarded with the Victoria Cross.

Families going through great turmoil are described as bearing their cross.  The term ‘excruciating’ comes directly from the Latin term for cross (crucis or crux).  The crux of Easter which we are celebrating on March 31st is the mystery of the cross, the mystery of how Life double-crossed Death, and brought good out of evil.  There was no more excruciating way to die than in the unspeakable agony of the Good Friday cross.

Good Friday was the most evil day in human history.  Yet the Good Friday cross functioned like a cosmic vacuum cleaner sucking all the evil, sickness, pain, and hatred into itself and then imploding it into oblivion.  Pontius Pilate the Roman Governor in Israel cross-examined Jesus and could find no fault in him.  Pilate forced Jesus to carry his own cross to the Calvary hill.  After shoving eight-inch spikes into Jesus’ wrists and ankles, Pilate ordered the nailing of a sign at the top of Jesus’ cross which said ‘King of the Jews’.

Jesus wasn’t cross at Judas who betrayed him with a kiss.  He wasn’t cross at Peter who denied him three times.  He wasn’t cross at his other disciples who all ran for their lives.  He wasn’t even cross at the Roman soldiers who took great delight in torturing and humiliating him before his final execution.  Instead Jesus cried out from the cross: "Father, forgive them for they know not what they are doing".  The heart of the Cross is forgiveness, forgiving the unthinkable, forgiving the unforgivable.

Why is so hard sometimes to really forgive like Jesus on the cross?  Click to find out more….


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St. Simon's Anglican Church 
North Vancouver, B.C.