At first, I began to get impatient as Lizzie meticulously studied each wooden cross. All had been handcrafted, making them unique in appearance, and her examination process made it a time-consuming ordeal, writes Mark Reidy in The Record.
Lizzie is a young lady who lives on Perth streets, probably no older than 30, but it is difficult to tell. Her eyes are often bloodshot from sniffing glue and drinking cheap alcohol; she is usually angry, sometimes aggressive, and is regularly sporting cuts and bruises.
Today, one of her eyes is swollen shut, but she isn’t looking for sympathy – she never does. She didn’t even want a blanket or a hot coffee on this cold night.
She had come with one purpose – to get one of the small crosses that she knew I gave out. Lizzie was looking at the six or seven crosses I had left. They had been individually crafted by a wonderful man, Peter Morrow, who had recently passed away. It had been his way of spreading God’s love to those living on the streets.
He would lovingly carve, shape and polish each one, specifically praying for the person who would receive it. It was the individuality of each cross that made Lizzie’s choice so difficult. My impatience slowly dissipated as I realised she was simply looking for the one that best reflected the struggle she carried within.
That was the beauty of Peter’s crosses – no two were the same – some were bent, some were twisted, none were perfect. They mirrored the lives of those who received them – each sculptured by the hurt and suffering that had been inflicted upon them.
What the crosses did have in common, however, was their message of resurrection hope. Finally, after holding each one to the light and muttering to herself, Lizzie’s eyes lit up. “This is the one”, she whispered.
FULL STORY Some pieces of wood can explain our lives (The Record)