The Weight of a Cross

Sometimes things aren’t as they appear.

A small object can be surprisingly heavy and a large object surprisingly light. Think of a marble versus a balloon. The visible size of it does not speak to the actual weight of a thing.  I have always marveled at how some people can bear great burdens in their life and still maintain a peace about it while others carry significantly (apparently) lighter loads and are buckled beneath the weight of it.

What I have come to understand in life is that everyone carries a cross. No one is exempt from it. Each person has their own, customized cross, that cannot be compared to another. It may look different. It may appear to be lighter or heavier depending on one’s perspective or a particular time. But it cannot be reduced to a comparison. Each unique cross is exactly as heavy to its bearer as another’s is to them.

Overcoming Burden. Embracing the Cross.

Having delivered four babies the natural way, I can speak to the inefficiency of fighting the inevitable. The best advice I ever got about childbirth was to let go and give in–go with the pain, not against it. Resisting what is inevitable makes the pain greater and more enduring. Life brings with it a plethora of challenges. It is only when we give in to the reality of those challenges that we can begin to make progress in our life. Stop wishing for something different–you would just be exchanging one cross for another of equal weight. Embrace your cross–as it is now, not as you wish it were. When you pick up your cross, you stop being weighed down by it and are rather transformed by it.

Momentum means facing current realities while being hopeful for better ones.

Positive thinking and goal setting are part of the process of living out our Christian faith. We grow in hope and purpose so that we can reach our ultimate goal of unity with our Creator. Being positive and hopeful does not mean that the current reality can be ignored. Living with momentum means recognizing the current circumstances as they are, doing the best that we can in every moment and working towards a better future.

  1. Stop comparing. Even if you have it hard, there is always someone who is struggling in different ways.
  2. Embrace it. There is an Aesop fable that recounts a child stung by a nettle. He went running to his mother in tears. While caring for his injury, the mother wiped the child’s tears and counseled him: “Next time, grasp the nettle firmly in your hand and it will feel soft as cotton.” Grab your cross firmly and own it.
  3. Don’t stand still. Carry your cross means to move forward. Working on yourself, your circumstances and your relationships takes work. You should always be growing forward, not standing still.

Are you embracing or trying to escape your daily cross?