Envisioning the Cross

Today, we’re going to again use poetry to engage our imagination. The author of this piece found great healing as she imagined the cross in a way that was very personal to her. Are there ways you relate to her? Are there ways God might want to heal and fuel forgiveness through how you imagine the cross today?

O God,
through the image of a woman
crucified on a cross
I understand at last.

For over half my life
I have been ashamed
of the scars I bear.
These scars tell an ugly story,
a common story,
about a girl who is the victim
when a man acts out his fantasies.

In the warmth, peace and sunlight of your presence
I was able to uncurl the tightly clenched fists.
For the first time
I felt your suffering presence with me in that event.
I have known you as a vulnerable baby,
as a brother, and as a father.
Now I know you as a woman.
You were there with me
as the violated girl
caught in helpless suffering.

The chains of shame and fear
no longer bind my heart and body.
A slow fire of compassion and forgiveness is kindled.
My tears fall now
for man as well as for woman.

You were not ashamed of your wounds.
You showed them to Thomas
as marks of your ordeal and death.
I will no longer hide these wounds of mine.
I will bear them gracefully.
They tell a resurrection story.

Author unknown