What the Cross has Meant to me

My assistant, Kimberly, passed a message to me from TBN at the end of last week asking if I might be willing to share what the cross of Christ has meant to me personally. They weren’t requesting a teaching. They were requesting a testimony. I couldn’t remember ever being asked for precisely that in those exact words.

Beth, what has the cross of Jesus meant specifically to you? 

Since I would have been writing a post for Holy Week anyway, I decided to try to articulate my response as best and as briefly as I could. What I know for certain is that my finite mind lacks the elasticity to stretch without snapping to the bounds of what the cross has meant to me. A vertical log with a reach “as high as the heavens are above the earth, so great is his steadfast love toward those who fear him.” A horizontal crossbar with a stretch “as far as east is from west, so far does he remove our transgressions from us.” Who can estimate this side of the cloudy sky all He has saved us from and saved us for? All He has fought for us and won for us? And not the cross itself, of course. Our faith has no reliance in relics. Those two pieces of wood possessed no personhood, no atoning power. It was Jesus alone, hammered beyond recognition and nailed to them.

But within the limitations of my understanding and the language of story, what has the cross of Jesus meant specifically to me?

I have no memory of innocence. As young as I can remember, I bore an indefinable but unshakable sense of shame, guilt and anxiety. I do not know exactly what happened in those earliest days to bring such a cloud over a child so young. It was not until I was victimized a little later in my childhood that I was bombarded with silent horror by a sickening sense of familiarity.

Green kids

I have no memory of Jesus-lessness. The custodian of First Baptist Church of Arkadelphia, Arkansas rarely unlocked that east entrance to the public that the Green family, party of eight, did not pile out of a blue and white van and walk through them. We went to Sunday school and worship service on Sunday morning. We headed to choir late Sunday afternoon then stayed for Sunday night church, where our pastor delivered a different message from the one he’d given earlier. On Wednesday late afternoon, we headed to church after school and attended world mission classes (in our church a child’s first words would have been ma-ma, da-da and the-Great-Commission) and afterward we skidded down a linoleum floor to Wednesday night supper in our fellowship hall. I can still picture just exactly how that food was arranged on that plate: sliced ham (anemic pink) with a side-slice of deep red cinnamon apple. Same circle every time. Perfect hole where it had been pre-cored. Next to it were approximately 27 green peas – a little wrinkled but still well able to roll off the plate and onto the floor where all glad congregants could wear them home on the soles of their shoes – and a barely-browned dinner roll that split right down the middle like Baptists have a mind to do.

The moment Wednesday night supper was swallowed, prayer meeting up and followed and right there in that same fellowship hall. The plates clacking loudly in the kitchen became rhythmless percussions and the flatware, musical spoons, to an overture of the same deep, familiar amens voiced somewhere from the back. Strange how a disembodied voice could bring considerable comfort. In a world of disturbing undependability, we could depend on certain things around there like Brother Humphrey’s seven syllable a-a-a-a-a-a-mens. I went to Vacation Bible School every summer where my mother always served and, by the sixth grade, I helped in this class or that. We suddenly picked up – lock, stock and barrel – and moved to Houston, Texas when I was 15 and I continued the same pattern at a nearby church and would not miss a summer of VBS until I was 37. And lo, how it pained me to break that record. If I were given to lying in a testimony, I’d lie right now and tell you I hadn’t missed one yet. A person with my background wants in the worst way to have just one perfect record to humbly boast.

I accepted Jesus as my very own Savior around eight years old – Lord, how I wish I knew the exact date – and made it public before my church at nine. We stood up front in those days when we made decisions like that and congregants stood in line to shake our hands. I cried like a baby, face as red as a beet, caught completely off guard by the humiliating eruption of snot and tears. Those Arkansas gray-hairs, though. They understood. I know that now by the way they nodded their heads and smiled warmly at me. “Yep. We get it,” maybe the women were trying to say with the lipstick bleeding in the cracks of their mouths. “You’ll feel that way a lot of times and, by the way, this will be the best decision you’ll ever make.” Yes. I’ll give a thunderous seven syllable amen to that.

Our family had yet to suffer our peak years of instability. Those would come when I was in junior high and high school.

Madness.

This was my life. This parallel existence, tiptoeing, knees shaking wildly, on the tight rope hung between love and lunacy, where I was too terrified of heights to guess which way I would fall.

But fall, I did. At first just into occasional ditches. Then into an abyss so deep it seemed to have no floor. I tried to will myself into a reversal of gravity. I tried to repent my way into a reversal of gravity. Though I was utterly repentant and miserable and spotlessly forgiven by a merciful God, I continued to freefall, limbs flailing, and sanity teetering. I knew no other way. My theology had yet to collide with my reality. The belief in my heart had not yet jumped to life in my bones. I had been sorry before. Truly sorry. But I eventually returned to the same defeated pattern. I had a heart for God. I’d been mesmerized by Jesus since childhood. But I had a mind bent with torment. My battle would not have been obvious to most observers. I had been a successful student and an overachiever in endless organizations through both adolescence and young adulthood. But a reckoning had come. My past had come to reckon with my present and it would have a titanic effect on my future. How, as I free fell further and further into that black canyon, only time could tell.

I no longer knew who I was. If this Alice could have peered into a looking glass, the person she would have seen bore no resemblance whatsoever to the person she thought she was. She was dying. My infirmity, vulnerability, weakness and sin had joined forces and done me in. Life as I had known it was over. I, as I had known myself, was dead.

Hopeless.

And that’s when it happened. With the hardest jolt of my life, I fell with a deadweight thud into the arms of Jesus.

The person I had been before would twitch here and there for just a little while like there was just a little life left in her but, like a hen losing its head to a farmer’s ax, the old me finally gave up the protest, accepted she was dead and dropped to the dirt where she belonged.

Many years have come and gone since then and life has never lost its sharp, mean edge but I have lived adventures – some that are none of your business – with the One who caught me. He fought and won His bloody way to the incomparable love of my life and is, to date, the solitary good that dwells in me. He is a greater reality – this unseen Savior – than any human form I can see with natural eyes or touch with the skin of my fingertips.

I thought and, in many ways was taught, that the power of the cross was only for the lost. And I praised God for it and was awed by it and deeply thankful for it. I am still unspeakably grateful for it. Life with Jesus begins no other way. The lost must be saved. The sin-wrecked must repent. Eyes blinded to the Gospel must, by the work of the Holy Spirit, come to see. This is death to life for us all. Those who come, come this way alone.

But, the power of the cross has only begun to have its full sway when a man or woman is born a second time and, not by natural means but, by the Spirit. I got up again this morning by the power of the cross. I opened my Bible this morning and received the living, breathing word of God by the power of the cross. I prayed this very morning for impossible things to happen and had the guts to thank God in advance for miracles by the power of the cross. I came to my feet and proclaimed his greatness and his holiness and his power and his favor and his future over my family by the power of the cross. I kissed my husband of 37 years for the umpteenth time this morning by the power of the cross. My children love me and do not think me a fraud and, I promise you, only by the power of the cross. A few days ago I hugged a total stranger, a young mom named Lisa, tightly like she’d been my kin for years on end, right there in a grocery check-out line by the power of the cross. She told me with tears in her eyes how many times we’d  studied the Bible together. My memory of sin completely intact, the divine wonder of it was not wasted on me.

office verse her many sins forgiven

 

 

This coming Sunday at my church, by the power of the cross I will walk to the front and receive the elements from a man and a woman holding them out tenderly, accessibly.

Miss Beth, Christ’s body broken for you. Miss Beth, Christ’s blood shed for you. And I will want to cry. And  probably will.

I will sing what He has done for me. I will proclaim that I once was dead and now I live. And I will do so by the power of the cross.

Any and every victorious moment I ever experience is by the power of the cross. That the enemy did not and still has not destroyed me is by the power of the cross. The power of the cross saved me as a child and it saves me as an adult. It will save me in my death and, through its crimson gate, His glorious resurrection will raise me in God’s presence.

There I will see the face I long to see. There I will see the arms that caught me. There I will see the scars that saved me. There I will see the Lord’s Christ and know as I’ve been known.

Oh, that my words were recorded, 

that they were written on a scroll, 

that they were inscribed with an iron tool on lead, 

or engraved in rock forever! 

I know that my redeemer  lives, 

and that in the end he will stand on the earth. 

And after my skin has been destroyed, 

yet in my flesh I will see God; 

I myself will see him 

with my own eyes—I, and not another. 

How my heart yearns within me! 

Job 19:23-27


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104 Responses to “What the Cross has Meant to me”

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  1. 1
    Pamela Houston says:

    “At the cross, at the cross where I first saw the light and the burden of my soul washed away, it was there by faith I received my sight, and now I am happy all the day!” Just yesterday I finished with our group of Ladies the awesome Bible Study Beth penned way back in the early 2000 something, “When Godly People Do Ungodly Things”….and I found a lost puzzle piece I had been looking for, for the whole of my adult life. It was found right there, at the cross! Amazing grace….simply amazing, and what a transformative find, right in the middle of Holy Week. Heaven will tell of your ministry to hurting hearts, Beth. I am so grateful! Grateful for the cross and the gift of understanding.

  2. 2
    Fran says:

    Thank you Miss Beth for every bit of this. Easter Sunday and communion together puts a lump in my throat like no other time. The love Christ has for me, for you, for us all is beyond my understanding, but we graciously receive it and humbly say “thank you Lord” for that cross and the immeasurable love He has for this world. For me.

    May the cross reveal something new to us all this year and we continue to be overtaken by Him in a fresh way.

    So much love to you!
    Fran

  3. 3
    Hannah Belle says:

    What a precious blessing of a post! You’ve got me crying with humble gratitude at the power of the cross. Thank you for this, Ms. Beth. See you in Miami next weekend!

  4. 4
    Lawan says:

    Wow. Thank you. Happy Easter!

  5. 5
    Betty M says:

    Dear Beth,
    That is the most beautiful post I have ever read of yours. Under the shadow of that horrifying and beautiful cross we have been forgiven not once but millions of times. Under the shadow of that cross we join in celebrating the undeserved death and resurrection of the best friend and Savior we could ever have. It is becuz of that cross we spend short fleeting moments embracing dear friends like you,Beth, our hearts about to burst with the joy we have in serving such a Savior,wishing we had hours to tell all He has done for and with us. I am so looking forward to an eternity to serve Him perfectly in endless praise and to embrace friends as we share our love for Him and each other. We well have forever to do it. Even so come Lord Jesus.
    Much love to you this blessed season,
    Your Dakota friend,
    Betty M

  6. 6
    Becky says:

    This spoke to my heart in a way that nothing else has in quite some time. As soon as I finished reading it, I listened to “The Power of the Cross” by Travis Cottrell and the lyrics resonated with me in a fresh new way. Thank you Beth for sharing this with us.

  7. 7

    My life & what the cross means to me…perfectly articulated by you, Mrs. Beth! :’-) ONLY…by the power of Jesus Christ…on the cross!!!

  8. 8
    Jaime says:

    Amen! I can’t count the number of hours or days that we have come together in bible study! I never would have imagined that through that first study “Psalms of the Ascent” that several years later I would be leading a bible study group. The Cross of Christ is my peace and my joy! The Lord alone knows just how far he has brought me and I am eager still to see where he will lead me next! I’ve cried many tears with you as I worked my way, sometimes kicking and screaming, through this study and that study. I am a sinner saved by grace and not a day goes by that I do not thank my Lord for all he has done for me!

  9. 9
    Lynda. Rickey says:

    AMEN!

  10. 10
    Jami johnson says:

    Ms.Beth. Thank you for sharing. Your story is so dear to my heart. Many of the things that have taken place over your life happen in mine too.
    Abuse can mess you! But, something so sweet with Jesus seems to make all the junk that has happen in life that makes you feel anything but normal, suddenly make sense and have purpose. Has Jesus uses it to minster to women. Only Jesus. Like you, I’m not sure who I would be with out those things happening. Thankful for you and your heart for Jesus. Your boldness and audacity are captivating to women especially me. Love who you are in Him forever. Know that you are prayed for daily and your faith in Jeus is winning souls daily. Let us be found faithful. Much love to you and your sweet staff! See you in Al this year at LPL. ❤️ Jami Johnson

  11. 11
    Shelly Elston says:

    So beautifully articulated. Thank you! Just hearing the testimony of others brings me to tears. Holy Week has always been a favorite week of mine because of the magnitude of the gift. The cross – meant to be a symbol of suffering and death – means LIFE to all of us who believe. Thank you, Jesus.

  12. 12
    Pat McMahan says:

    Amen, my friend in the Good God that saves us
    I am a retired Dallas Fire-Rescue and for 32 years I witnessed stuff, like suicides and the depravity of mankind, it still lives with with me to this very day!!! But through the Grace of God I know I’ll me reseeded on the Other side!!! God bless you and your family and please keep writing those inspiring Articles, my friend in Jesus!! I’ve only become aware of Jesus SAVING POWER and r-e-a-l-l-y come to know Him since I’ve slowed down!!!! You are aware that most firefighters work 2jobs and I happened to make more money in my 40 years than I had every thought possible but only until recently did I thank The God that saves me every day! PLEASE KEEP UP YOUR GREAT WRITINGS!!!!!

  13. 13
    Kelly S says:

    Thank you Miss Beth. I am so thankful for your words and for your ministry. Much love to you and your family.

  14. 14
    Yanna Westmoreland says:

    One thing. Psalm 27:4 all that I ask. So thankful by His Cross I am led. Thank you Beth for your testimony and sharing with all of us.

  15. 15
    Beth Herring says:

    Gorgeous. What a beautiful reminder that no matter our past, our future can be a redeemed, restorative work of art by our God! As a missionaries, this is the first time my husband and I will spend Easter apart from our children and grandchildren. We will spend this precious Resurrection Sunday in Nicaragua. . Praying for a glorious time in the Lord.

  16. 16
    Julie says:

    Precious Beth,
    I can hardly write this for the tears. Oh how I needed to be reminded of the meaning of the cross! My family is going through tremendous stress and our faith is growing weaker by the day. I’ve been begging God to work in our situation and restore our faith and bring us back to our first love. There are just times when we feel forsaken and wonder if He is even listening. Thank you Beth for helping me remember my first Love and to realize that He is never the one who moves, it’s always us who let the stress of life distort our minds and cloudy our view causing us to feel far from Him.
    I’m the first to admit I get very frustrated with Hin and tell him that so many times but being the understanding, loving Father that He is, He doesn’t give me what I deserve but let’s me know through posts like this that no matter how hard life seems, He’s always going to see us through!!! Praise His Name!!! Thanks again Beth

  17. 17
    Karen Todd says:

    Thank you Beth for sharing with us your testimony. I will never forget the cross and how my life was saved and is being renewed daily because of the cross.

  18. 18
    Betty M says:

    Hi K Mac!
    I so enjoyed visiting briefly with you at SSMT back in Jan I loved watching your behind the scenes role in keeping Miss Beth on task etc. Was so fun! Hope I can do it again!
    Much love to you this Eastertide!
    Betty M

  19. 19
    Esme says:

    I am still falling and wish to be caught. Jesus come have your way! You are such an inspiration Beth

  20. 20
    Jo Ann says:

    This brought tears to my eyes. Thank you for your touching testimony. I had a Baptist church upbringing, and I’m glad for it! I’m so glad my parents sent me to a Christian school because the 5th grade teacher said something about us needing Jesus and as everyone ran out to recess, I sat in the chair and asked Jesus to be my savior – then ran out to recess! I love Jesus and I’m grateful to read your well-spoken testimony of how He will change your life! Give you joy, light, love. Thanks. And, I love Jesus!

  21. 21
    Donna says:

    Love this! It’s so true that it was by the power of the cross that I was and am saved. It is also by the power of the cross that I am saved daily from myself. The song by Josh Wilson, “Savior, Please” came to my mind “Savior, please keep savin’ me.”

  22. 22
    Marge Turner says:

    Such a beautiful testimony, Beth! Blessings to you and your family, you give so much so that we can know Jesus better and love Him more, and I know it is all by the power of the cross!
    Have a wonderful Resurrection Sunday!
    PS You hugged me, a stranger, at the SSMT Celebration, it was so fun to be with all the siesta’s!

  23. 23
    Kimmygirl says:

    Ms. Beth,
    You don’t know it, but I spent the morning with you. Session 1 of Esther study, with my dear Wednesday Bible Study ladies. Many of them requested Esther after seeing it promoted in Anointed, Transformed, Redeemed that we just finished. Second time for me- but ‘Esther’ is still fresh
    Actually, you don’t know it, but I have spent MANY hours with you through the years. Breaking Free was the first to change my life- when I discovered the ‘lavish love’ of Jesus as you called it. Amazing. All sorts of studies after that one, each with it’s own perfect timing ordained by God for what I needed.
    I want to thank you for this essay on the power of the cross because it echoes what is also in my heart. It is only because of Jesus that I can take one more step toward my 58th year, only because of His mercy and love that I didn’t give up years ago…It is easy to look back and regret things in the past. But because of the power of the faithfulness of Jesus, resolutely obedient, dying on the cross for me, that I can go forward and give Him glory for every piece of history in my life. Like you said in the session: we cannot amputate our history from our destiny. It’s all in His hand!
    Have a wonderful resurrection Sunday, Ms. Beth!

  24. 24
    Elisabeth says:

    LOVE this. Happiest of Easters, Miss Beth!

  25. 25
    Jes says:

    Beth,
    There are striking similarities in our stories: never knowing “innocence”, being surrounded by Jesus from a very early age, that deep, desperate yearning for the More that was never filled.
    But, a year ago in April, God began a revolution of freedom in me! After many, many slow, grinding years of process, my shattered heart and soul are being dramatically healed…it’s breathtaking and wondrous and incredible! The cross of Jesus, for me – a long-time believer – saturates my story.
    Thanks for sharing your story, and for your ministry. You have long been a part of my journey, God speaking truth through you in some of my darkest times. Though it is unlikely we will meet this side of heaven, I will look for you in heaven for a huge hug, sister!

  26. 26
    Patsy says:

    Well Sister, I could see your church, smell the food, hear the plates and feel your pain as if I had lived it with you. Probably one of the most powerful writings/testimonies I’ve ever read. Your words always seem to allow me to see Jesus more clearly, more real and more powerful than before. How much more I have learned to love Him through your words. We live because He lives!

    Your sister by another mother,

    Patsy

  27. 27
    Deborah Maish says:

    Thank you Beth for sharing your testimony of GRACE. Thank you Jesus for “…setting our beautiful Beth on a rock, making her feet secure, putting a new song in her mouth, a hymn of praise on her lips…” [Psalm 40:1-3] to be shared with so many. Thank you Beth for sharing your passion and love for Jesus with all of us for so many years. You will never know on this earth until you meet Him face to face what your ministry has meant for so many of us. God Bless you and your family this EASTER!!! Glory, Hallelujah!!!

  28. 28
    Evangeline says:

    What a beautiful reflection of the cross. One so personal and a testimony that encourage me with my personal journey with Jesus. My heart is so full of gratefulness to Jesus and the redemption the cross brings.

  29. 29
    Sonia says:

    Hello Beth,

    It was only God who prompted me to look you up. I have done many bible studies of yours and have learned so much from them. I have been changed because of them. We live in Honduras and the resurrection is not talked about much and this led me to search for your website. Who would of known, only God. Totally blown away with the story of the cross. God wants to renew us, transform us and restore us. Thank you for sharing your understanding of the cross and your life story. We serve an Amazing God for He is faithful to keep his promises to us.

    Blessings,

  30. 30
    Susan says:

    Amen & Amen! Have a blessed Easter! So looking forward to the day when it’s forever Easter, in His presence, for us all!

  31. 31
    LaVonne says:

    The cross was necessary for us to be able to have everlasting life. The pain, suffering, and total seperation JESUS experienced was for me. JESUS is the way and only way to be saved. JESUS offered me a free gift that all I had to do was accept. I was broken, devastated, hurt badly at the suffering JESUS endured for me. I accepted the gift, HE became my personal SAVIOR, The cross is now empty and so is the tomb. JESUS is alive and lives inside of me and I rejoice daily for everlasting life. I am grateful daily and rejoice in JESUS second coming. May I be found with my oil lamp filled and my wick trimmed. The Bridegoom is coming for me.

  32. 32
    Elaine Johnson says:

    Amen.

  33. 33
    Sandy Fry says:

    Bless you for sharing your story. I feel the horror of what you must have experienced as a young child, and also the wonder of our God who redeemed us both, and woos us absolutely relentlessly. So grateful for this power from God and His amazing love. I was saved at 14 from and unsaved household. I am grateful that I have never lost the awe and amazement that the Lord loves me so unconditionally and completely.

  34. 34
    kathy says:

    God Bless you and yours, Beth Moore!!! and God bless all of us on this journey. I have not read the blog in a while. Well, your last two posts are mighty powerful in the Kingdom, dear one. Thank you!!!! I needed some hope in the Lord today. You were the vessel that shared the hope.

  35. 35
    Sarah Bessey says:

    Waving my hankie here and crying along with you. Resurrection changes everything!

  36. 36
    Tanya Smith says:

    Amen. Everyday I realize the power of the cross. When once I was sure I knew it completely. Is that your house with the wall art? How very great if it is. Probably your office come to think of it but great just the same. I put things like that in my home–modern day altars of remembering.

  37. 37
    Deborah Mott says:

    Thank you for sharing the greatness of the gospel through your life, His Life and Words and your words. I esp. loved hearing of your salvation at 8 and public confession at 9. The words love and lunacy stood out to me. I love your honesty and how you say so much without saying too much: The madness. The losing of self. The near insanity. Hopeless. Wow. I relate. Even after salvation you became hopeless…that brings hope. I think that place of hopeless helped me learn the power of the Cross in a significant way. Because Christ suffered the hopelessness of man’s depravity where collision of our deserved judgment collided with His love to bring us God’s Mercy. Maybe Christ took all lunacy and gave all love? Christ took our hopelessness for sure. The darkness of sin, the darkness itself Christ the light of the world became. Mind blowing Love. Resurrection Love…the overturning of the fall of man.

    The Favor of God through the Son of God…God’s favor = the beam down and the Son of God stretching out his arms= the beam across….

    “The only basis on which God can forgive us is the tremendous tragedy of the Cross of Christ. To base our forgiveness on any other ground is unconscious blasphemy. The only ground on which God can forgive our sin and reinstate us to His favor is through the Cross of Christ. There is no other way! Forgiveness, which is so easy for us to accept, cost the agony at Calvary. We should never take the forgiveness of sin, the gift of the Holy Spirit, and our sanctification in simple faith, and then forget the enormous cost to God that made all of this ours.” Oswald Chambers Utmost for His Highest, The Forgiveness of God, November 20, 2016.

    The Mercy of God meeting the Justice of God. I saw a cross that had Mercy for the crossbar and Justice starting at bottom and going up. At the center of the cross was the shared C. That would be where we can see( c) the heart of Christ for man.

    The grace of God and the glory of God merge at the Cross of Christ. Forgiveness of sin for any whosoever.

    Thankful for Travis’ song Jesus Blood Speaks for me. First Resurrection Sunday it will be played. May many be healed and saved through the truths within.

    I esp loved your sharing your taking of Christ’s broken body and blood: “Do this in Remembrance of Christ” moments at church. Wonderful beautiful Savior celebrated for His wonder working gifts.

    Happy Resurrection Weekend and living proof life….

    Thank you again. Excited for LPL Miami very soon. Praying for you and team.

  38. 38
    Valerie Geib says:

    Oh how I love you, sweet Beth. I love Jesus more because of you. We have spent many years together in study as well, just like the young mom you met in the grocery line. We will have quite a get together in heaven. Your words ring true in my heart for much is the same with me. He has been life to me as well. To know I have a Father in heaven who love me is a glorious thing to me. That alone has taken me through some very dark days. Thank you for all you do. Thank you for being a example of a woman who loves Jesus with every ounce of everything you have. I want to love Him with as much fervor. You are precious to me and I thank God for you. Happy Resurrection! He is risen indeed!

  39. 39
    Audrey says:

    Thank you, Beth. I am so thankful for the initial salvation work of the cross, but am continually grateful that we can proclaim the reality of Jesus’ sacrifice (which means He truly did live!) every time we remember Him, especially connected with communion. He wrecks me every time. And our church shares in communion each week…and, being the pastor’s wife sitting through two services, I take it twice. May the awe of His grace, the strength of His love, the undying faithfulness never grow old to us. He is everything. Much love to you all ~ love, Audrey

  40. 40
    Deanne Alsup says:

    Amen! Thanks for sharing your testimony and proclaiming the power of the cross. God bless you. Have a glorious Easter celebration!

  41. 41

    WOW!!! Amen! By the power of the cross…I live and breathe and have my being…there, but for the grace of God, go I…truly, all is grace…by the power of the cross…many blessings to you ❤️

  42. 42
    Tracey Knight says:

    Beth, thank you. Needed that so much.
    We still do the going to the front of the church & the long line of shaking hands at First Baptist Arkadelphia. and every time I hug a child up I tell them, “you will never regret this decision. You just keep loving Jesus your whole life.”
    I had no idea when I accepted Him at 10 that I would love Him so now. I had no idea what He would mean to me. I had no idea the life we would live together. So incredibly grateful.
    Thank you for putting words to what is so hard to express. Love you dearly~

  43. 43
    Fran Plott says:

    Oh sweet sister in Christ, your testimony of being that precious little hurt child and that unstable teenager who needed and found Jesus fills my heart with love and compassion for you and for all of us who need Jesus. I am so filled with love for precious, precious Jesus who is our Comforter and Savior in this life and in the life to come.

    Happy Easter!
    He is risen!

  44. 44
    Karissa says:

    By the power of the cross… I needed that refocus today. It’s been a difficult birthday for me. This helped me to change my perspective from what I don’t have in life to the greater reality.

  45. 45
  46. 46
    Brenda says:

    Thank you.

  47. 47
    Jane says:

    A-a-a-a-a-a-men!! Powerful testimony and so very true. Daily, the cross sustains me. Daily, the cross reminds me. Daily, the cross inspires me. Daily, the cross encourages me. Daily, the cross forgives me. Life would be meaningless without the cross!

  48. 48
    Carol says:

    What an awesome reminder that all that we do (and I mean ALL!!) is only through the power of the cross! Have a blessed Resurrection weekend!

  49. 49
    Bailey says:

    I have been a follower of Christ since I was 16; 8 years later and I am struggling with the reality of the cross of Christ more than I ever have. I don’t know what’s wrong, but your post gave me some hope. Thank you for that, really.

  50. 50
    Sarah Philpott says:

    Oh, Beth. I cried the whole time I read this. I had forgotten the full meaning of Easter. My baby brother, 13, just passed away this last Monday. He has battled cerebral palsy for years, and this time, it won. But Easter has just not felt like Easter. I forgot that out is because of Easter that I will see my star eyed Jonathan running up to me. But more to what Easter is, it’s forgiveness. As a little girl I went through abuse for years. Two years to becoming a survivor of rape and not being saved by my mother, then the next eleven years of being physically, verbally, and emotionally abused. Nothing in me wanted to really forgive my parents. But my mother, who had been going through pictures of me and my brother, called to apologize. And only by the grace of God was I able to say “I forgive you.” Easter may have lost the joy that I always accented to the season, but it gained a while new reason.

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