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Why should I carry a cross in my pocket?

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Taken daily, it might just be the perfect medicine for what ails you

Living inevitably entails accepting joy and, along with it, pain. Both are essential parts of our existence. As we go through life, we do experience moments of slight or even residual pain. At other times, our suffering might grow, yet we still can handle it and deem it somehow acceptable. But there are also circumstances in which our pain is so acute it’s suffocating.

Have you ever thought having a cross in your pocket could be your best medicine for that kind of pain? Holding it in your hands when you are having a hard time, or simply taking a glimpse at it while you keep it in your purse, tote or backpack can help you remember that you are not alone. Someone accompanies you in every step you take.

When those who participated in World Youth Day 2011 went back home, they took with them a medicine that some probably still use on a daily basis. They were given a small cross, in a box similar to that of a common medicine, accompanied by an explanatory leaflet. What was written in the leaflet is worth remembering:

Directions:

  • The Cross awaits us every day. It comes in various forms: tiredness, temptations, problems, illnesses, disasters, deaths, setbacks, and so on. The Crucified One says to us: “If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow me.”

Precautions:

  • The Cross does not ensure a comfortable life but a loving heart, like the one of the Crucified. Being a friend of the Cross and living in love with God will lead you to behave differently, leading a lifestyle that will powerfully draft the attention of those around you. The Crucified One will give you strength and joy to go against the current, effectively spreading around you the active ingredient of the Cross: love.

Dosage:

  • You run no risks of overdose wit this medicine. The heart longs for true love.

How to use:

  • The Crucifix can be used in many different ways, at any time of day or night, but try to use it daily.
  • You can carry it with you, just as many people carry the picture of those they love in their diary, their wallets, their mobile phones, their screensavers or their cars.
  • You can also put it in almost any place. As a sign of love and peace, the cross presides over cities, mountains, crossroads and buildings. There are crucifixes in millions of homes, both rich and poor, all around the globe.
  • You can stare at your Crucifix, and let it speak to you. Keep in mind “the Cross is a living book, from which we learn who we are and how we should act. This book is always open before us” (St. John Paul II).

Side effects:

  • Joyful living, abandoned in the hands of God.
  • The capacity to bravely overcome the difficulties of each day.
  • Strength and personality to go swim against the tide.

Expiration:

  • This medicine does not have an expiration date. The Cross of Christ is the definitive medicine.
  • Keep the crucifix within reach and in sight of children, young and old (all will find true happiness, for themselves and for others, in the Cross of Christ).

Don’t you think it’s time to get a cross and keep it in your pocket?

(This article was originally written by Sofía Gonzalo for the Spanish Edition of Aleteia)

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