We woke up this morning in Amarillo, Texas. I have never been in Amarillo but I am always excited to be in a new place! I am stoked to see all the incredible parts of this world. As we make our way to Phoenix, we continue to encounter new people, new scenes, and new lessons!
On the way into town, we passed what the sign boasts as the largest cross in the western hemisphere! I am not sure where there is a larger one since this one is pretty impressive. It is right off of interstate 40 and has a chapel and other smaller crosses around it.
There is a a restaurant in Amarillo, that says that if you can eat a 72 ounce steak in one hour, then your steak is free. I was tempted! But, that is the equivalent of at least five normal steak dinners! It sounds like you have to eat about half a cow! If you can eat that much meat, I think you deserve to get the meal free, especially since you are going to probably “pay” in other ways later on!
So what do huge crosses and huge steaks have in common other than the obvious (I guess everything really is big in Texas!) Honestly, I got to ask the question “Why?” about both things. Why do we need huge plastic crosses on the highway? Why do we need contests that pit our stomachs against the meat industry? Are we that preoccupied with “big is better” and “more is best?”
Leaving the cow for a moment, let me say a word about the cross. I mean no offense but it felt like to me that this monument to the cross actually misses the point. The cross that Jesus died on was an object of torture and we rightfully use it as a symbol to remember what he did for us. It is special because you and I deserved this kind of death and Jesus died instead of us. I love displaying crosses tastefully in our homes and our churches and around our necks. Unfortunately, at times we lessen it’s meaning and turn it into mere jewelry or other mass produced icons. In addition, I want to help people know about the empty tomb as well. The combination gives us hope for living!
I don’t want to be critical of people who are well meaning in making something that felt was a unique memorial, but I have to wonder if this kind of display out on the highway actually helps those far from God come back to him? Maybe it does… but there is least the possibility that it could actually drive them away. They might not get any more from it than they get from going to a restaurant and eating so much that their stomachs are ready to explode.
Maybe, you and I become the best image of the living Christ? What do you think?