As the weather is getting nicer out, I have been walking more around my neighborhood. I have enjoyed seeing the grass turn from winter brown, to a few blades of light green, to darker green lawns .I have watched the trees and bushes go from bare branches to little leaf buds. Some trees actually looked yellow as the green leaves popped out in their light green baby clothes.
Neighbors have been doing spring yard cleanup chores – getting the dry fall leaves out of the bushes, pulling stalks from lilies and leaves of hosta plants to make room for new growth to spring up. Rakes have been put to use, and new muscles and blisters have been found at the end of the day.
I have also noticed more than just nature on my walks. I have seen amazing chalk drawings and inspirational and encouraging messages on driveways and sidewalks. The cool part about chalk drawings is that with each rain, or shower with a hose, the old is washed away, and there is a new, fresh page to draw and write on.
But there are other things I notice on my walks. I like to see how many crosses I can see. I know that some of my neighbors have white crosses in their yards, but these are not the only crosses I can see. Some windows have crosses painted in them, from Easter art projects. There are fence crosses where horizontal and vertical boards overlap. Sometimes driveway cracks form crosses. Or tree branches, if you look at them from the right angle, or shadows on the ground. There are LOTS of places in our neighborhoods and community that have crosses, if we just look for them.
We are still in the Easter season, the 40 days between Easter, Jesus’ resurrection after his death on a cross, and Pentecost, when the Holy Spirit came rushing down on the apostles in Jerusalem, and they started spreading the Good News of Jesus throughout the known world.
During this time of waiting, the disciples and others of Jesus’ friends were hunkered down, much like we are now. They were trying to figure out life, and the “new normal” in which they found themselves. Life was tricky, and scary, not very different from some of what we are experiencing now.
The ever-present crosses outside of Jerusalem were meant by the Romans to be signs of warning, but they were actually signs of victory! Yes, Jesus died, but he also rose from the dead!
So, I challenge you – take a Cross Walk. Look for crosses as you walk around your neighborhoods or drive around town. See how many you can find – pre-made or nature-made, permanent or temporary.
And remember that the cross the Romans meant for harm and destruction, God used for good and blessing.
Happy cross hunting!