Earlier this week I had the opportunity to spend time with a family who was with their father during his last days of battling lung cancer. They had to tell him good bye on Wednesday morning around 8:45. Later that afternoon I was with them and they were sharing with me stories about their dad in his last days.
One story they shared was about a purple cross. Yes, a purple cross. It turns out that their Dad's favorite color was bright purple. A few days before he passed away, one of his daughters got him a purple cross to hang from his rear view mirror. What happened next really challenged me. They presented the cross to him and they explained to him that it was to hang in his car. He then told them that he didn't want to hang it in his car, he wanted to put it around his neck.
You see, this man's life had been changed by Jesus. As he faced the reality of death, what really mattered rose to the top and all of those petty things that we worry about and fret over faded away. That purple cross reminded me that at the end of the day what really matters is whether or not you know Jesus. In those last days that purple cross, hanging around his neck, close to his heart, reminded him of his Savior who died so we could join with Paul and say, '"Where, O death, is your victory? Where, O death, is your sting?" (1 Corinthians 15)
So, may you and I revel in the cross today. May we hold the cross close to our hearts. I am reminded of Romans 1:16 that says, 'For I am not ashamed of the gospel, for it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes, to the Jew first and also to the Greek.'
Praise God for that old rugged cross and our Savior, Jesus, who died and rose again!