Previous Challenge Entry (Level 2 – Intermediate)
Topic: Cross (as in the Cross of Christ) (08/17/06)
TITLE: More Precious than Platinum
By Trina Courtenay
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Instantly I felt a wondrous attraction to the cross. The cross and I, a homeless teenage girl are both representative of suffering and shame to those who do not understand. God understood. He quiet literally used the cross to bring me to the saving knowledge of His Son.
From the first moment I laid eyes on the cross I started saving every penny I found or was given. I longed to have the cross. To me it had become more precious than platinum. When at last I thought I saved enough I dared to walk through the door.
The clerk looked up, smiled and asked if she could be of any assistance. Imagine asking someone like me if I needed assistance. I must have smelled like dead fish for lack of a shower or clean clothes for over two months. I thought to myself, if she could stand my stench without even a flare of her nostrils then I would inquire about the cross.
The clerk said I could go on over and get a closer look. Nervously I walked up to it and with shaky hands I flipped the price tag over. In hand writing so small I had to squint to read what was written in red; I was able to make out that it said, free plus bonus with purchase.
Free? But I saved my pennies to purchase it. I went days without eating or going to the shelter. I sacrificed my own wants and needs. I was almost to the point of being angry but instead of boiling over I asked how the cross could be free and inquired as to what the bonus gift was.
She explained to me she could not sell something she did not pay for. I was beyond confused at this point. She went on to tell me ‘twas on that old cross Jesus suffered and died, to pardon and sanctify me. It was not she who sacrificed herself on a hill far away but Jesus Himself who bought and paid for what the cross represented as well as the bonus gift of salvation. Then she told me if I wanted the cross and all that it represented I could have it. All I had to do was ask and so I did.
As I lifted the cross above my head and placed it around my neck I felt love and acceptance wash over me for the first time in my short life. An overwhelming desire to know more of this Jesus overtook my being. I turned and asked the clerk if she would be willing to tell me more about Jesus and why He did what He did.
For the next two weeks I spent my afternoons with Sarah, a Christian and the store owner as she told me how the dear Lamb of God left His glory above to bear it to dark Calvary for a world of lost sinners just like me. I also learned to cherish the old rugged cross, for He died for me. And one day He’ll call me to my home far away, where His glory forever I’ll share. Until then I will cling to my old rugged cross, for through it I can see a wondrous future.
Words in italics are taken from the hymn, The Old Rugged Cross.
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