Exult in the Cross
by Jenna Legg
We recently had a young adult retreat introducing Precious Blood Spirituality in four sessions - covenant, cross, reconciliation and cup. Since today is the Feast of the Exultation of the Holy Cross (say that three times fast!) I figured, I'd focus on what it means to be people of the cross.
Like many others, when I think of the cross of Christ, I often turn to guilt. How many times have I been told that my sins put Christ on the cross? On Good Friday, there's a somber tone and sense of darkness when we venerate the cross. And while there is a sadness in that moment, today, we exult in the cross!
To exult means to be joyful for or to be happy or excited about. As we look to the cross, we have to remember that Jesus did not HAVE TO die on the cross. He chose to. He did it to show us his immense love for us. To some extent, it's hard to fathom. I mean, we weren't even in existence on this side of earth yet and he died to show us he cared about us!
Think of it another way -- think of a time when someone did something to show you how much they cared for you. Was it a profound gesture? A surprise? Or a small reminder to show you their love?
My husband surprised with me tickets to a soccer game once. We both love the sport and play when we can. But once we started fostering kiddos, we didn't have time to play or watch. But one time, he surprised me tickets and planned the whole evening - he found a babysitter, we went to dinner, drove to the game and watched without kids. It was a wonderful reminder of how much he cares about me. I knew he loved me before he planned our date night, but this made it real and tangible. So of course I saved the tickets to the game; they're hanging on the fridge with other souvenirs from memorable moments.
This is what the cross is for us! Jesus did not have to die on the cross for us. There could have been another way. But Jesus chose the cross to make his love real and tangible for us. And the cross is our reminder of that occasion, of that act that sacrifice. It's much more than soccer tickets; so shouldn't I proudly hang it on my wall, wear it on my necklace or keep it near to me, so I can remember what my Beloved did for me?
Today, let us be proud of the cross, let us honor and be joyful in the cross. Our Beloved loves us so much and what beautiful thing He did for us! It's a symbol of love and triumph! Let us remember Jesus and the day no one will ever forget, when our beloved did the most loving thing one can do! Let us exult in the cross!