Carry the Cross
On Monday, March 30th, 2013, Country Woods completed our first "Carry the Cross" event. We invited members of our church and our community to join us on the Saturday before Easter in carrying an 8 foot tall wooden cross from downtown Terry, MS to the front doors of our church in Byram. The total distance would be 9.7 miles and would end up taking 3.5 hours to complete. This would be a time of fellowship with each other, a time of testimony for those that crossed our path, but more importantly it would be a time of reflection. That morning we would reflect on the significance of the cross and on Jesus' ultimate sacrifice on that cross. It's one thing to sign up for a church event, but it becomes something else entirely once that cross is laid upon your shoulders and you hear the sound of the wood being dragged along the asphalt as you begin your part of this journey. Ultimately you know that you will only carry the cross for a very small portion of the 9.7 miles and at the end of the 'event' you will likely take your family to lunch and continue on with your regular Saturday activities. How does that contrast with what Jesus endured before, during, and after he carried his cross?
"The weight of that cross was more than I anticipated, it was definitely not an easy task. I couldn't stop thinking about Jesus and his torn and worn body carrying his cross with people mocking him, spitting on him, and beating him as he carried his cross. I was embarrassed at how soon I was wanting to stop because of how heavy it was, and the fire in my calves that I started praying and pushed through the pain and carried it up 2 long hills until someone else took over. It so very humbling. I kept singing "Jesus Paid it All, all to Him I owe" in my head. And while my feet are killing me right now, I am so blessed that I was able to show the smallest token of my appreciation for what Jesus did for me. I am so undeserving!" - Lauren Guthrie
In 2014, we carried the cross for approximately 19 miles (6.5 hours) from FBC Crystal Springs to Country Woods. Our prayer is that we increased our time of fellowship, our testimony was seen by more people, that we were able to reflect more deeply, but ultimately that we brought glory to God.
In 2015, we carried 3 crosses for approximately 18 miles from the crossroads of Hwy 27 and Hwy 51 in Crystal Springs to Country Woods. We started off with approximately 26 people and ended up with over 70. Thank you to WAPT Channel 16 News for the great job that they did covering this story. You can see the story here.
Please plan to join us on Saturday, March 26 for Carry the Cross 2016. This year we are partnering with Harmony Baptist Church and Copiah Academy to carry 3 crosses from the All About Animals veterinary clinic in Crystal Springs to Country Woods Baptist Church in Byram, MS. We will be depart from Country Woods at 6am and drive to All About Animals. At sunrise (6:56am), we will begin taking turns carrying the crosses for approximately 18 miles until we reach our destination. You can join us at the beginning or at any point along the route. We will have escort vehicles along the route and a limited number of safety vests will be available. We are also purchasing safety colored shirts this year to help with visibility. If you are interested in purchasing one of these shirts for $10, go to the Country Woods Facebook page and select a size from the survey pinned to the top of the page.