Eventually I found myself kneeling in the sand, pushing the sand into clumps that would form a cross. The tide managed to stay a few inches back, so it didn’t wash away. It wasn’t anything extravagant now, just a small cross. I smoothed the edges, I leveled the top, and there it was - my little cross in the sand. I was quite proud of it, even if it was short lived. Shortly, as if on cue, the water from the lake started pushing its way further. It brushed the edge of my cross, causing it to soften and crumble. I pushed some more sand back onto the cross, and all was well again. I’m sure you can manage to assume what happened next. The waters came further, harder, faster, and stronger. My little cross in the sand was nothing but a soupy glob that kept washing away, and getting smaller, and smaller. I tried desperately to fix it, but to no avail. Yeah, okay, so most people would look at it under the impression that it’s merely a little cross built in the sand. It was destined to wash away, anyway, and surely I must have known that.
Then it reminded me of something.
And all of a sudden I saw that little cross in the sand as a newly-placed faith in Jesus Christ. As if, when I sculpted that cross...that was like a new believer taking the first steps to committing their lives, and all the faith they have, to God. And when they step back and look at what has been done, what has been sculpted in their life...it’s...well, like that small moment of joy I experienced on the beach - Even if only for a moment...wonderful.
Then the waves come.
Then, the world comes.
As if the water sensed a symbol of surrender, a symbol of hope, in that little cross in the sand...and, of course, came rushing upon it. No matter what you do to try fix it, salvage it, or re-build it...the waters just keep coming. Determined to wash it away – like how the world seems to be determined to bring anyone who calls themselves a Christian to destruction.
So what’s best to do? Keep sitting there, pushing the sand back onto the cross in soupy globs, hoping it will keep its form? Or shield it completely from the waters that are coming. Perhaps let the waters destroy it and go build another one elsewhere? Or...wait...maybe this is all a trick question. Like, “Hey, what’s my cross doing in the sand anyway? Wasn’t I supposed to go build it on a rock or somethin’?” And that’s the key. Don’t focus on the world. Focus on the cross. Build your relationship firm in Christ from the beginning, and let the waves come. No matter how hard they come at you...your faith is built on a rock, which cannot wash away. Let the world see that no matter what it can throw against us, we will persevere.