I stubbed my foot on a shell this morning. Glancing down, I noticed a cross carved into its curve, a cross apparently the result of worm holes or a shell borer. I was reminded of how often I see crosses in the world around me—two lines near the bay form a perfect cross, bent sea oats producing a perfect perpendicular shape, twigs that litter the deck in crossed form, birds whose flight crosses in a giant X shape—all of these are visual representations of crosses I see every day. I keep a small cross in my purse and I sometimes wear another around my neck, but somehow the crosses I discover in nature have even more significance. I wonder why. Is it that in nature, for instance in the puffer fish whose skeleton reveals a perfect cross, I search out the symbol of my faith? Perhaps it’s important to be reminded of the suffering and victory granted by the empty cross, to let my eyes skim the world around me locating this reminder, thinking again of the debt I owe. How blessed I am, Father, that you reveal your gift wherever I look. May the day never come when I am blind to the cross and all it represents to me. Amen.

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