What is 'our cross' and how do we recognize it.?greenspun.com : LUSENET : Catholic : One Thread
What is 'our cross' and how do we recognize it.?
-- abc (firstname.lastname@example.org), March 06, 2005
-- (_@_._), March 06, 2005.
"The everlasting God has in His wisdom foreseen from eternity the cross that He now presents to you as a gift from His inmost Heart.
This cross He now sends you He has considered with His all-knowing eyes, understood with His divine mind, tested with His wise justice, warmed with His loving arms and weighed with His own hands to see that it be not one inch too large and not one once too heavy for you.
He has blessed it with His holy Name, anointed it with His grace, perfumed it with His consolation, taken one last glance at you and your courage, and then sent it to you from heaven, a special greeting from God to you, an alms of the all-merciful love of God.
St. Francis de Sales
-- jake (email@example.com), March 06, 2005.
Hi Jake, What a wonderful quote. Bless you for shariing with us. God Bless.
-- Ramanie Weerasinghe (firstname.lastname@example.org), March 06, 2005.
Yes nice quote jake, thanks for “risking” it, but it doesn’t actually answer the question. Your “cross” is whatever thing or things that causes you suffering or difficulty in carrying out your Christian duty. For most people it is not a certain one big thing that looms up one day, but lots of little things that occur every day. Our Lord told us to take up our cross DAILY and follow Him.
-- Steve (email@example.com), March 06, 2005.
Jake and Steve, I think both your answers are great.
And while we're on the subject of crosses, I'd like to share something with you:
I've just read a book entitled Christ in Dachau by Fr. J. Lenz (I've spoken about this on another thread, so I apologize if it looks like I'm trying to beat everyone over the head with it!) It's the memoirs of an Austrian priest who was sent to Dachau for five years, for speaking out against the godless ideology of the Nazis. His suffering was intense, since Catholic priests were lumped together with Jews by the Nazis as the absolute "scum of the earth." And the Catholic Church was considered by many of the Nazi leaders to be their biggest enemy.
And this priest thanked God every day for the cross he was given, and received the grace to bear it.
The problem is this: After reading about the torture that this man had to suffer, my own crosses have shrunk to the point where I can't even see them anymore!
Is this a good thing?
-- JJ (firstname.lastname@example.org), March 07, 2005.
My guess is... what you thought was a cross wasn't really a cross. For your crosses to shrink and disappear either means that you were making mountains out of molehills to begin with, or you're being self righteous, thinking that you are perfected now, not needing to carry a cross any longer. I can pretty much assume that you're not doing the self righteous bit. ;)
Example... a man thinks that he's depressed. Going to work every morning feels like such a huge burden for him. So he thinks that it's his cross to bear because he needs to provide for his family. What's wrong with this picture?
Maybe he doesn't know what it's like to have joy in the Lord. When you are truly joyful, it doesn't matter where you work, you are content with where God has you. So the man is making work a burden when it doesn't have to be.
The man must realize that it's not a "burden" to go to work, work is something that God made the human body to do.
The man is acting like work is a cross to bear because he is being self-righteous. Work is something everyone has to do. You get off your butt and you do things, whether it's an actual job or you're taking care of children, even if you are hunting for a job, you are working. It isn't a cross to bear, it is a normal activity.
Let's say the man in my example read about martyrs, and realized that his "cross" had shrunk, his "burden" of working isn't so much a burden any longer... ok, are you getting me?
I'm not saying that you are like this, I just tried to give an example of why a cross can shrink. By the way, it sounds like yours is a scenario in which you've gained a bit of perspective. That's not bad, it only changes how you view a situtaion. The question is, now that things are changed, what are you going to do about it?
-- Rina (email@example.com), March 07, 2005.
The cross for each of us is simply the will of God for our individual lives.
For Jesus, the cross was something he HAD to ensure to complete His mission and purpose of His human life in order to fulfill God the Father's will for Him to reconcile man to God. Jesus agonized in the garden over the cross and yet died to His fears and anxiety and went through with the plan that God laid out for Him.
For us, the cross is for each to die to ourselves every day. We lay aside our desires, goals and plans and ask the Lord to work His perfect will through us and in us. We also die to our flesh and choose to live holy for God, free from sin. That struggle to obey God and to live holy is the cross we bear.
-- non-Catholic Christian (firstname.lastname@example.org), March 07, 2005.
"My guess is... what you thought was a cross wasn't really a cross."
BINGO! That's what I was thinking. So basically, God isn't giving me any special crosses at the moment. Just the normal daily stuff. (And the little annoyances were smaller than I had realized. Ok.)
David, great point.
-- JJ (email@example.com), March 07, 2005.
So basically, God isn't giving me any special crosses at the moment
You must be doing something wrong. Read this.
-- jake (firstname.lastname@example.org), March 07, 2005.
Jake, that's a 16-page document, and I'm at work.
-- JJ (email@example.com), March 08, 2005.