Thursday, April 29, 2010

The Cross of Contention

The More…of me
(by R.P.Edwards)

I’m so much more
Than mind and flesh
I’m spirit, that with these doth mesh
And for a span
A triune “one”
Your father, brother, lover, son
And then the violent, cleaving part
Where spirit flies from silenced heart
And tears are shed for my decay
And time is marked by year…and day
As you live with fading dread
Believing I am lifeless, dead
And your world is filtered through this truth
That dreams all die, with dying youth
Recall, dear one, and then release
And then lay hold, of promised peace
For I live still, on distant shore
For He hath said… “You’re so much more”

A promise to a dear friend.  A friend, who, as a young medic had cared for his fellow soldiers in the War to end all Wars; World War I.  Riley Bembry, a prospector of sorts, had, in 1934, erected a Latin cross on Sunrise Rock, a nondescript outcropping in the Mojave Desert.  It was a memorial; a remembrance from one soldier to his fellows who had fallen in the service of their country.  For nearly five decades he maintained the simple tribute and, as his life’s force slowly ebbed he asked his dear friends, Wanda and Henry Sandoz, to carry on the tradition; to carry on…the memorial.  They have done their best.

Well, you know the story.  There was a complaint about a religious symbol on government land.  There was a sympathetic court that wanted it taken down.  There was a clever congressman who kept it up by legislative daring (maybe you don’t know that part.  Rather interesting.  He is a California Representative by the name of…Jerry Lewis) And then there was the “box” the jurists placed over the “offensive” object even though the Sandoz’s had traded five acres of their own land for the one holding the cross (thus placing it on private property).   And so, finally, the Supremes, in a five to four decision, decide maybe the “separation” thing doesn’t have to get rid of all religious symbols. 

Offended by the cross.  Nothing new.  But the greater offense comes by the neglect of legislators to guard our precious constitution.  The United States Constitution, that near-sacred document that ends with the phrase, “in the year of our Lord.”  Where the chief executive must swear (remember the words, “so help me God“?) or affirm his commitment to the same.  Where a ten day span for signing a bill into law can only be lengthened by the Sabbath’s pause (Sunday…the Christian observance).  Yes, offense “should” be taken by a nation that elects representatives who leave, unchallenged, the whim of a few; the few who have reformed our foundation to support their own godless sepulcher. 

One final thought:  Why not just a statue of a doughboy in pose?  Why not a polished stone with an etching of dates and details?  Because, with the cross, whether you’re devout or no; with the cross there is a pointing…to the resurrection.  Yes, more than a mere remembrance, there is a knowing; a certain holding to the hope…that life does not end.  That there is more to “me” than what you see.  A “more” …that goes on…into eternity.

That’s what I think.  How about you?  Click comments below…and say.

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