The Crucifix

Friday, April 2, 2021
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Listen while you read: "O Come And Mourn With Me Awhile"1 (Lyrics)

John 19:30b – [Jesus] said, It is finished: and he bowed his head, and gave up the ghost. (KJV)

In 1951, when I was eight years old, my family did not regularly attend church, although I did understand that Jesus loved me. During Easter break that year, my family took a vacation to see friends in southern California, USA. One of our stops was at the Spanish mission, San Juan Capistrano, built in 1776. Moving to a darkened doorway from the brilliant sunlight, I stood to let my eyes adjust to the dimly lit building interior. When I could see where I was going, I turned toward a large display case on my left. I saw a lace mantilla and comb, a Bible, and then a sight that has left an impression on my mind, spirit, and soul for 70 years.

A wooden cross with a kindly looking man nailed to it was nested on black velvet fabric. I could tell that his hands and body had bled and that he had died. My eyes were riveted to the scene. Tears welled up inside of me. My young mind had so many questions. Who was this man? What does this mean? Why would a man have to die this way? Was this man important? Why would this man and the cross be in the case where you couldn't touch him? For some reason, I felt drawn in and wanted to be close to him, and I didn't want to leave when my mother came back to hurry me on.

Several years went by before I learned the good news of the gospel and the message of Jesus' death and resurrection. It was then that I realized that the kindly looking man on the cross at the mission, a crucifix, represented the sacrifice that Jesus Christ made for the world. I believe that the Holy Spirit touched my soul that day in that mission. When I was fourteen years old, the image was still clear in my mind as I accepted Jesus Christ as my Saviour.

We all come to know Jesus in as many different ways as we are individually unique. As we approach resurrection day and celebrate that Jesus is risen, let's draw close in a deeper way to Jesus Christ our Saviour. Let our minds be transfixed by the reasons that He gave His life for us and by His resurrected power to live again, that we might live with Him throughout eternity. Let us think of the ways that Jesus has touched us with His nail-scarred hands, His bloody forehead, and the wound in His side. He died for the sins of many, including ours. To His honour and glory, as He lives again, so will we when we come to Christ.

Prayer: Dear Father, in Your holy power, draw each of us closer to You as we learn to live life according to Your teaching. Help us to understand the depths of the sacrifice of Your only begotten Son Jesus. Amen.

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About the author:

Karen Milam <>
Penn Valley, California, USA

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1 Comment

  • PresbyCan Feedback says:

    May it be so, Karen.

    Thanks be to God! Amen.

    Thanks, Karen, for a Good Friday image that resonates!

    Thank you for sharing this impactful devotional with us today. To God be the glory! Blessings.

    Happy Easter Karen
    This was beautiful, thank you.
    God bless.

    Dear Karen, thank you. Beautiful message from start to finish.
    (QC, CANADA)

    Greetings Karen,
    Thank you, Karen, for sharing your experience as a young child seeing a plaque depicting the crucifix. It certainly would have made a lasting impression. Today being Good Friday, we experience that deep sad feeling of the suffering that our Saviour endured and fervently look forward to the joy of Easter Sunday when we can shout, “He is risen, He is Risen indeed”. We need be ever so grateful that He is ever so ready to watch over us and care for us. Blessings for writing and sharing your Christian journey.

    Dear Karen,
    I love your story of how your faith grew from your experiences. We are all unique as you saw, and we all have different faith stories. By sharing them our community grows and becomes richer and more united. I appreciate that you share yours and this particular one on Good Friday. We are all blessed to have Jesus touch our hearts in many ways over the years. As I age, I realize more and more the sacrifice Jesus made for the World and me in particular. My life becomes less focused on the day-to-day pressures of living in this world and I grow to understand how many times, God helped to comfort me over the years. May God draw us all closer as we share our stories. Blessings.

    Thanks for sharing the beginning of your story Karen. It is always amazing to me, how the Holy Spirit touches people. My grandmother had Holman Hunt’s picture of Christ standing at the door knocking on the wall beside her bed. When l stayed over, we shared her bed and l would lay and look at that picture before falling asleep. I always wondered why he wore the thorns on his head and what he was doing. When l was ten l heard the gospel, and then l knew the answer to my questions and my heart was forever changed. Today that picture is on the wall beside my bed, and my little granddaughter looks at it too, while she lies in bed beside me.
    Be especially blessed this Easter weekend.

    Hello Karen,
    I appreciated your experience and had a similar one when I was about 7 or 8 years old. It was when I was looking through my uncle’s Bible which had pictures in it, the picture that caught my attention was one which depicted a Man with His hands tied around a pillar, He was stripped except for a loincloth, His face was bloody, a crown of rough looking thorns was on His head. His chest was lacerated and bleeding with stripes from the whips that two muscular men, muscles bulging, also stripped to the waist, were using to inflict this horrible torture on a Man whose face looked sad and innocent. My young mind reacted with anger and tears at this horrible crime. I was raised in the church but never understood the significance of what Jesus endured to save me until later years. He was treated as I deserve that I might be treated as He deserves, He died the death that was rightly mine that I might have the life which He offered. With His stripes we are healed. Praise the Lord, Jesus is coming again not to wear a crown of thorns but a Kingly one to fulfill His promise to all who receive Him. John 14: 1-3
    God be with and bless you. Thanks for sharing.

    Thanks so much for your great Good Friday message. Keep up the great work.
    (Ontario, Canada)

    Good morning Karen,
    Thank you for your devotional about the crucifix, there are different thoughts about the cross and how it should be displayed. I appreciate you telling us about your experience. I wish you a happy Easter. The Lord is risen indeed.

    What a wonderful example of the Spirit at work. She knew exactly how to touch the heart of your 8-year-old self and prepare you for the time you would make your commitment.
    For instance, have you ever wondered why the sight of a man crucified did not frighten you? We can all learn from this and celebrate as we, too, allow the Spirit to touch us.

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