Care and Feeding of
By Jack & Carol Scott
We receive many questions regarding how to take care of The HoldingCrossTM. There are so many ways for you to "care for the cross". Here are a few:
An infant comes into the world : a newborn miracle. Perhaps the mom was given The HoldingCrossTM to "hold on to" during labor and delivery. Perhaps that HoldingCross is given to the child as the cross that mommy brought you into the world with.
A young man or woman has made the decision to confirm their faith. They go to classes to learn what it means to be "confirmed". They learn more about the cross and their personal relationship with Jesus. They affirm their place in the Church as a member. Perhaps The HoldingCrossTM as a gift for them to carry the rest of their life as a reminder of what Jesus did on the Cross of Calvary so that we could be free from sin and have a relationship with the Father.
A couple is getting married. All of their closest friends are selected to participate in the ceremony. These are the people the couple want to have as witnesses, supporters, encouragers and people they've asked to "pray" for the newlyweds. Perhaps The HoldingCrossTM given to each to remind them of the occasion and the commitment. The occasion of marriage where two become one as husband and wife; the commitment to pray for them ... "in sickness and in health, for better or for worse, 'till death do us part".
A close friend has been given some news. Life changing news. Maybe cancer. Maybe a tumor. No matter what the name ... it is difficult and frightening. Perhaps they are given The HoldingCrossTM to remind them that God promised never to leave them or forsake them. Perhaps The HoldingCrossTM will encourage them to be in prayer more ... to talk with God., to cry with Him, to come to Him.
"I can't do this without you", you think. "I've failed so many times before", you say. The world says I'm lost. The deceiver says I'm worthless. Everyone around sees my failure, but you see my heart. Now, this day, this moment I give my life to you Lord. Be my savior, be my Lord, be my protector, be my all. Perhaps The HoldingCrossTM as a simple reminder to grip to the Cross when nothing else makes sense.
The class is over. You've learned so much this time. The leader of the Bible study has helped open the scripture in a new way and you "get it". It has helped you to take a step deeper into that personal relationship with Jesus. Perhaps The HoldingCrossTM to say thank you. Something to encourage them and bless them. Something to remind them to continue to "run the race" and "be ready in season and out".
Their loved one is being deployed overseas. They serve our country and protect our freedoms. Perhaps The HoldingCrossTM to remind them of prayers from home. Something they can hold on to in the darkest part of the night watch. Something simple they can hold and remember they are held up in prayer by the very loved ones they are protecting.
The old man can barely see any more. His hands and face are wrinkled with age. His speech has long since been garbled and almost unrecognizable. You bring communion once a month to him. You say some prayers, sing a familiar hymn and offer Communion. Perhaps The HoldingCrossTM is placed into those frail hands. He grasps it immediately as if it was meant to be there. A tear comes to his eye. A smile is formed on his lips. It's almost as if he is holding on to the fingers of Jesus as he relaxes and meditates on the moment.
The military chaplain spends time with the young man. He is only 22. He has been in the eye of the storm of battle and has seen the worst of what a fallen world has to offer. He wasn't prepared to see horror. Nobody is. He doesn't understand why people are so cruel. How could God allow this to happen? Perhaps The HoldingCrossTM can bring comfort in the midst of the Post Traumatic Stress. Perhaps feeling something tangible in the hand in the midst of a world that doesn't seem to care. Prayer, reflection, forgiveness, mercy, grace all seem to collide in the moment. A precious moment of one reaching out to another comforting, encouraging, healing, believing. God is on the Throne and He is King of Kings and Lord of Lords in spite of what lies the world tries to convey.
The day is done. She's lived a godly life. She's touched so many people in her life. Here in the casket is a woman of God that has been blessed to be a blessing. She has died knowing she will live. She believes. She is already in the presence of our Lord. Perhaps she has asked that The HoldingCrossTM she's been praying with these many years would be given to her sister or daughter or son. Perhaps the sorrow of death will be replaced with the joy of knowing that this is "her" HoldingCrossTM that you now hold.
Care for the Cross? The HoldingCrossTM doesn't have any stain or lacquer - it's just wood. We've taken some of the rough edges off with sanding and smoothing ... like God does with us.
Maybe it's not about taking care of the cross at all. Maybe it's taking care of the Church ... the People of God … The Body of Christ … reaching out with a simple gift. Taking any faith moment of life, from birth to death, and celebrating whose we are.