At the conclusion of our week of youth camp, we took turns carrying a cross from one of our meeting areas to another — we carried it down the road and up a hill to another location. Once the cross was in place, each one of us was given a nail and we used it to nail a piece of paper to the cross. We each had written a specific sin, problem or struggle on that small piece of paper. One by one, with appropriate seriousness and solemnity, we nailed our record of sin upon that cross and walked away. Some of us shed tears. Some of us prayed. Some of us stood or sat in quiet reflection.

As we each waited for our turn to approach the cross, we sensed a feeling of anxiety. We waited. We did not want to move too quickly or too slowly. We did not want to disturb those around us. We did not want to spoil the moment. We wanted to make sure we did it right. We wanted to make sure the significance of this event was not missed and that the impact of what we were doing was not lost on anyone of us. We were anxious as we approached the cross.

As we approach the cross today in our lives, we may be anxious — whether it is during a "Cross Walk" as described above or the weekly gathering of believers during the Lord's Supper or prayer time with a friend. As we approach the cross, we can experience anxiety. This anxiety may come because of the seriousness of the moment. As we approach the cross, we are reminded of what happened on the cross — Jesus died on the cruel cross of Calvary. We are also reminded of the reason Jesus died on the cross — He died to redeem people from their sins. As we approach the cross, we are reminded that our sins — whether they are written on a little piece of paper or burned into our memory — is the reason Jesus went to the cross.

As we approach the cross, we may be anxious — we are making a commitment to God by coming to the cross. We nail our sin to the cross and not only ask for forgiveness, but we also ask for the strength to withstand the temptation when it comes again. Making such a commitment makes us anxious. What if I fail to keep my commitment? When I nail this sin to the cross, what happens next?

You were dead because of your sins and because your sinful nature was not yet cut away. Then God made you alive with Christ. He forgave all our sins. He canceled the record that contained the charges against us. He took it and destroyed it by nailing it to Christ's cross. (Colossians 2:13-14 NLT)

Those involved in our "Cross Walk" were invited to make the walk and share in carrying the cross after nailing our sins to the cross. The same invitation is available to us today — and every day. Jesus invites you to take up His cross and follow him. (Mark 8:34)

Will you approach the cross? Jesus is already there. He is waiting for you. The price has been paid for your forgiveness. Come to his cross! Die to your old sins with him and let him remove them from you forever! Let his life come alive in you! Like the apostle Paul, be able to say:

I have been crucified with Christ; and it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself up for me. ... But may it never be that I would boast, except in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, through which the world has been crucified to me, and I to the world. (Galatians 2:20;  Galatians 6:14)