Though I am a resident of Alaska, and at one time last fall had one of your crosses, I’m not sure the following information will qualify for the “50th State” of your organization campaign. For one thing, I never recorded the number off the cross before I sent it on (you will note, however, I will describe it later on and perhaps you have a record accordingly). I didn’t think I’d be letting go of it so soon, nor its journey from that point on. Excuse me if I get too lengthy here, but you can use or eliminate anything you need to in order to reach your goal.
I received the cross from my sister-in-law, Cindy from Indiana, in November, 2012. Then in December friends were celebrating their 50th wedding anniversary and the following is what I wrote to them, along with giving them the book and the cross (description of cross: it had the words Love, Honor, Cherish written underneath one another, then 3 hearts drawn below that):
“This cross was given to me by my sister-in-law Cindy when I left her home this November, along with the enclosed book. She had several crosses laid out for me to choose from – all flawed in some way – but with a different message on each one. I chose this particular one because to me it represented how I want to be toward the Lord – to Love, Honor, and Cherish Him as my Lord and Saviour. The hearts are a reminder of His love and the cross of His sacrifice.
The story behind the beginning of the crosses is given in this book, so I won’t elaborate on it. However, the entire theme of the story of the crosses is that you can pass along your story of how you received it, and what it means to you. Then if the Lord prompts you to give yours away (which isn’t mandatory) you are allowing that cross to have many “stories” attached to it as it travels from one location to another, to more recipients whose stories will be as unique as your own. When the word was out about all of us giving a surprise party for you to celebrate your 50th wedding anniversary, I was pondering what to get you that would be meaningful to the celebration and my love for you. The cross seemed to be beckoning to me “What about me? What about me?” Of course! How appropriate these specific words and hearts engraved on a cross would fit Steve & Judy. The plan was formed and the result is my card to you and this “note” to explain the mystery behind it all. Now the cross is in your hands and you may hang it up somewhere, or one day it may also bring to mind a certain situation where there may be someone who needs this very message, and the cross will once again beckon “What about me? What about me?”
For me, for now, my message is relayed to you in your card, for I do believe that you have shown the message of this cross to one another through these 50 years. May there be many more years to add on to the 50 for you in your marriage. The Lord has richly blessed you and through you blessed so many others. Thank you for your testimony of what marriage is all about. “Then in my card to them, I wrote concerning the cross’s message: “You have set your lives to follow after the Lord Jesus Christ, who gave His life that you may live. With Him leading you through these 50 years of marriage, you have learned from Him to Love, Honor, and Cherish one another. The Lord has used you mightily in the work of His kingdom. You are examples of those whose hearts are open to show His love in ways too numerous to mention. Thank you for your faithfulness to those lives you’ve touched, especially mine! You have become special friends!”
The mustard seed somehow got lost on my cross, so I also gave this couple this message about that, which they would read about in your book and perhaps wonder where the seed was: “The mustard seed was not on the back of my cross as the tag says it should be – but I’m believing that the seed of faith which it represents has been planted in my heart and is growing day by day. As I pass this cross on to you, I also believe the same holds true for you!” I told you this would be lengthy, but I’m not wanting to leave out anything pertaining to my message to them about the cross and what I felt the Lord was directing me to say to them. The story of the traveling cross does not end there….for less than two weeks after their December 50th anniversary, a 42-year-old daughter of good friends and neighbors of ours suddenly died of flu complications in early January. She had been the main person who gave the party for Steve & Judy to celebrate their 50th, and now she was in the arms of her Saviour! My friend Judy came to me and said she felt to give this cross to the parents of this daughter. So it was therefore passed on and 5 months after that, the father of this daughter who died was diagnosed with cancer and is still fighting that battle, no longer here in Alaska, but in Alabama. They left everything in their home here in Alaska, which is probably where the cross still has a home, but I do not therefore know the number to pass on to you. When they return, and we are praying they both do next year sometime, perhaps the cross will find yet another a home to reside in and a heart to comfort.
Now you have my story of the cross I received and where it has traveled from my hands. My friend Cindy told me you are lacking only Alaska’s registration for all 50 states so I thought I’d at least try to see if this would qualify even though at this time I don’t have the number. Thank you for taking the time to read my extra long story and for the ministry your organization is fulfilling in touching so many lives for our Lord and Saviour.