I Can't Take It Off

March 31, 2000
by Anne Russell

Galatians 6:14a – May I never boast except in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ. (NIV)

Around my neck I wear a small plain gold cross. Most of the time I don't display it. I wear it to remind myself of the sacrifice Christ made for me. The cross is plain because Christ is not there. He has risen.

This cross given to me is but a symbol of my belief. It has no power. It doesn't denote me as a Christian; anyone could wear it.

It is how we appear to others, and how we behave, that tells people we are Christians. This cross and all other symbols are not necessary for us who believe. The scriptures tell us not to worship idols. We should not be drawn to "things", but only to God. He is the one, and the only one, whom we should worship. So you may say, "Why do I wear it?"

Reflecting on that, I thought: "Take it off; don't wear it." Then I looked down towards the keyboard, and, as I typed, I observed my wedding ring that I always wear. It was given in love and tells everyone I am married.

I stopped again, and thought about my cross. Though a symbol, it too was given in love. Not in love for the material cross around my neck, but in love for that wooden tree where our Saviour hung and died for us, in love. How precious was His life, given by God for us. How lovingly we receive His gift of the Holy Spirit, to empower us to go out to try to win souls for His kingdom.

This cross is but a symbol, but I can't take it off. It is precious to me, like my wedding ring, for it is worn in love for all to see. Even if it doesn't mean anything to anyone else, it does to me.

Matthew 10:38 – And anyone who does not take his cross and follow me is not worthy of me. (NIV)

Prayer: Heavenly Father, may the cross of Christ go before us. For it is through it we have received our salvation. May we be found worthy to follow after You. Amen.

About the author:

Anne Russell <annerussell80@gmail.com>
Brampton, Ontario, Canada

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