Crosses and Crowns
Oooo I feel like I haven’t written in a WHILE. I took the last month to cross promote my YouTube channel on my Thursday posts, and have been feeling a short-but-purposeful vibe for Mondays so my long form writing took quite the hit.
I hope y’all enjoyed that month of videos though! From now on new vids will be posted to my YouTube Channel every Wednesday afternoon so be sure to subscribe so you don’t miss them!
Okay and now back to our regularly scheduled programming:
There’s a line in a Christian song called “O Come to the Altar” that gave me something to think about the other day. The line, as the song talks about salvation and the grace of God and all the rest, goes “Bear your Cross as you wait for your Crown.” It’s an image I’ve heard in the Church repeatedly — giving the impression of the Sweet By and By, you know, enduring your suffering here on earth until your treasures are reached in heaven. The trope has been passed down for centuries, rooted in beliefs about the “world’s” inherent sinfulness and heaven’s inherent purity. It’s where we got clever slogans like “Not Of This World”, and “Be not concerned with Worldly things” (which I think might be an actual scripture?)
But the point is that it feels like This or That, God or the Devil, Sainthood or Worldliness, a strict binary.
But I actually think the beauty of living life on this earth might be that we bear our crosses and our crowns at the same time. We’re not biding our time, waiting for better or our rewards in the afterlife. Heaven is happening now.
You ever seen a sunset? You ever seen one of those videos of a dog welcoming its owner back from deployment? You ever laughed so hard you couldn’t breathe? All of that feels like heaven to me; your crown is on girl, she is here! *Channels Jonathan Van Ness*
And to take it even further, what if your cross is your crown? *insert explosion sound effects to illustrate a mind being blown* But for real, what if all the things you’re ashamed of, all the ways you wish you could be “like everybody else”, all the things you call baggage — what if all of that holds the key to your fullest liberation and fulfillment? What if all of that is what bonds you to others, what makes your art resonate or gives your work passion? What if our crosses and our crowns are the same things?
So I mean, I get it. I get what the song was trying to say (I think) but the idea of gritting and bearing through this life as we wait for our crowns in the afterlife doesn’t sit right. This life is holy, this life is pure, and this life is worth enjoying fully, so why not hold both?