Clouds lie low over a field, thick and dark and rolling. Though they leech all color from the grass, rain never falls.
Spread across that grass: crosses. They lie flat, in ever-widening circles, every direction I turn, ready for victims.
An impossible task. But I try again.
The condemned squirm. They howl. They reason. I kneel on skin, try to pin them down, but they twist away or the hammer slips or they fight me off or I slide to the grass in defeat and let them go. I’ve never gotten one to stay.
But this time surer hands encircle mine. Another more solid than I adds his weight. The nails drive true, and when I glance back at our work, they remain on their crosses.
At last we stop. Sweat coats my hair, slides down my back. My hands ache. As I catch my breath, the crosses around me begin to lift, dropping into waiting holes in the ground, a jarring thunk thunk thunk thunk thunk.
The ground quivers, stills.
I spin slowly.
They hang there, bare and exposed, and I know them so well. I recognize their jealousies and greeds and longings and idols and a hundred other impurities.
They look like me.
And still they squirm and howl and reason and it’s awful and tears drip down my face but he is merciful. He breaks legs, sparing me the hours this could take. Slowly they fall limp, lifeless limbs hanging from nails as his once did.
And I am new. I stand taller. I smile as he takes my hand to lead me away. His clothes shine as they always have, and I reflect his light, dressed now in blood-cleansed white.
I don’t look back.
Sunlight breaks through heavy clouds.
Those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires. – Galatians 5:24