Cross Training

I’ve been publishing this blog for a tad over three years now. My goal—more like a discipline—is to write and post three blogs per week. I limit each mini-essay to five hundred words per posting—another feat of discipline for anyone with diarrhea of the pen (or keyboard, as it were). In addition to Local Church Prisoners, I produce an e-letter (Pulpit Man at Large) each Friday that I shoot out by e-mail to a couple thousand unsuspecting subscribers.

The reason I mention all of this is not specifically to bore you with minutia. It’s to say that, every week, I have to come up with at least four topics upon which to expound. That, in itself, might be the hardest part of my writing experience. I’m constantly asking myself, what do I explicate today?

No Politics

For that reason, I try not to limit my topics very much. When you start tossing out general areas of conversation and interest, you can come up dry quite often. If I’m going to produce four, somewhat original pieces of work each week (with an occasional sermon thrown in as well), I can’t set too many parameters—although I attempt to avoid politics as much as possible (a herculean task of its own).

So… I derive my topics from a slew of places. These include (but are not limited to) human-interest stories, news items, fascinating phrases and sayings (fascinating to me, at least), and stuff that happens to my lovely Bride and me. Another thing that intermittently sparks a blog is the occasional picture. And that brings me to my topic today.

I just ran across a pic of a little girl attempting to help Jesus carry his cross. It’s an inspirational shot because it’s contemporary, and it’s real. She apparently saw Jesus (a statue) on his hands and knees, the cross on his back, and she wanted to help him with his burden.

I’m not sure of the context, but the statue looks like it might be a part of a 3-D Stations of the Cross depiction. Although they’re not in the photo, I would guess that her parents took her to the scene and may have been the ones who photographed the image.

The Heavy Lift

The old saying, “A picture is worth a thousand words,” definitely applies to this snapshot. This little child—maybe four years old—simply wanted to help Jesus carry his burden. Words fail to describe the thoughts, emotions, and offshoots of this scene. It is indescribable in that it probably evokes different things in different people, depending upon their prior experiences. For me, it is a reminder of the awesome privilege we have of being a part of what Jesus continues to do in this world of ours.

He told us that his burden is light (Matthew 11:30). It’s only light, of course, because he carries the bulk of it. He invites us to help him if we desire. This precious little girl has rekindled that aspiration in me.

[Dave Zuchelli is a graduate of Pittsburgh Theological Seminary and currently resides in Aldie, VA.]

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