1 Corinthians 1:18 NKJV “For the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God.”
This past week my wife, Missy and I were in Fort Myers, Florida for a church conference with a network that we are a part of. This biannual pilgrimage puts us there every spring and fall, and it’s something that we deeply look forward to each year. Usually we plan for an extra day to rest or lay around on the beach nearby. As the weather temperatures in Colorado are beginning to cool down, the heat in Florida is not waning even as summer has come to an end! After a fantastic lunch oceanside near the pier and a leisurely stroll down the beach, we decided to beat the heat, as they say, with some ice cream on our way back to the AirBNB we rented. This time, we landed at a nice little ice cream parlor called, Love Boat Ice Cream.
Now, I’m not sure if you have ever been to Fort Myers Beach or this specific ice cream local, but there’s a first responders wall that honors a fallen military hero along with all those who keep us safe and protected. Many patches adorn the wall from police and sheriff agencies across the country who have had a representative stop by at some point in time. I was admiring all the shapes and colors of the patches and thinking about the department that I carry close to my heart from back in Colorado, when low and behold my eyes fixate on two patches that hung near the edges of a 9/11 plague! There we were…Broomfield Police Depart and Broomfield Animal Control! Out of all the places we could have been, all of you were representing and being honored for all to see as they ate some tasty Gator Tracks flavored ice cream.
This moment captured my attention, because to the casual and unfamiliar eye, it was just a patch hanging on a wall. But to someone like me as a volunteer Broomfield Police Chaplain, who cares for and prays for each one of the employees in our department, it carries the weight and depth of so many amazing relationships. Hundreds of names and faces were hanging on that wall of honor simply because of those two patches which had been placed there.
So often, we can easily overlook a cross around someone’s neck or adorning the outside of a church, but so much is represented in that one symbol! To some it carries little meaning and representation. After all, the cross was a device of torture and death for the lawless in Rome and those who were accused of rebellion. Why would anyone find a man dying on one to be of any significance? But here in the first letter that the Apostle Paul writes to the Christians living in the city of Corinth, he says that to those who understand it’s significance it represents the very power of God on display. The very Son of God willingly laid down his life for our full and complete redemption and because of it, He now sits in a place of honor at His Father’s right hand! And now each of us, along with the millions of others throughout millennia, can find identity and value in that old rugged cross.