March 31, 2023

The Cross of Christ -- by Mary Folkerts


A Christian author’s writing is decidedly influenced by their belief system. Following the teachings of Christ means holding to an upside-down worldview that may seem outrageous to those who don’t understand the story of sin and redemption. Everything we write and the message we bring comes from living in the shadow of the cross. 

Because of Christ’s atoning sacrifice for us, He has become our identity and the message of hope we share comes from our position in Him. 

Come, let us gather beneath the shadow of the cross…

In the Shadow of the Cross


When Jesus,
the King of heaven,  
the designer of the galaxies,
begged his Father for 
another way
creation must have held 
it’s collective 


For more than the nails

piercing His flesh

more than the 


thrust on His head,

He glimpsed the darkness

of hell

and staggered under 

its weight.

For in the shadow of 

the cross

He perceived how

taking the shame 

of my sin

upon Himself

meant absolute separation 

from God. 

“Yet not my will, 

but Thine be done,” 

prayed the perfect Son of God

as in anguish, He foresaw 

the Father turn His face


The wrath for my sin,

the cup poured out on 


the sin of the world


onto His shoulders,


His agony 

for my saving.

And while his grief 

and anguish

at what looms before Him,

fall like drops of blood

from his face,

we sleep in 


For we do not 


nor can we perceive

of the hell He tasted 

In our place

complete darkness,


devoid of God.

For holiness can not 

abide sin.


We have never known 

the complete absence 

of God

for His fingerprint is 

always present–

in the sunrise,

in the cry of a newborn, 

in our very breath–

even when we don’t see

even when we are too


with ourselves

to look 

for Him.

Were God to remove Himself

from us 

to turn His face from us

for even a moment,

we would know 


For hell is where God 

is not,

the emptiness would 

be more than we 

could endure.

And yet, for the joy set before Him

the Son of Man fixed His gaze 

beyond the shadow of 

the cross, 

beyond the scorn, 

beyond the grief,

beyond the mocking,

my mocking– “If you are the 

Christ – save yourself!”

I didn’t see 

that He was saving


And still, the cross throws its shadow 

over me

covering me, 

erasing the guilt I bring.

His grief for my freedom

His pain for my 


The holy exchange

the wrath my sin deserved

placed on Him, 

the sinless 


In the shadow of the cross

the curtain torn 

in two

a way made for sinful man

to access God most 


Only through the blood of the 

One who hung dying,

Jesus, the



and resurrected 


do we find the power 

to live

in the shadow of 

the cross.

The cross throws its shadow over 

my path,

pointing me in the way I 

should go

It is my roadmap, 

my due north.

My life a thank offering

to Him who gave His


for me.

I live in the shadow of the cross

It has become my identity 

the holy sacrifice,

that the blameless Son of God

would deem me worthy

to be abandoned for,

to be scorned for,

to die for.

He has become my identity

the One I will 

live for.

Mary Folkerts is mom to four kids and wife to a farmer, living on the southern prairies of Alberta, where the skies are large and the sunsets stunning. She is a Proverbs 31 ministries COMPEL Writers Training member and is involved in church ministries and music. Mary’s personal blog aims to encourage and inspire women and advocate for those with Down Syndrome, as their youngest child introduced them to this extraordinary new world. For more inspiration, check out Joy in the small things  or follow on Instagram  



  1. Dear Mary, thank you for this beautiful, beautiful poem. It flows with God's grace and glows with Christ's love.

    1. Thank you Wendy. I pray it helps remind us of the joy of Easter!

  2. Hi Mary! As a poet myself, I thank you for this wonderful reminder of this great act of love. As I read your poem I also thought of the "valley of the shadow of death." Neither "shadow" hurts us but reminds us of God's love. Blessings on your calling as a writer, my friend.

    1. Thanks for reading Allan! Yes we are safe in His shadow, thank the Lord! I appreciate your words!

  3. What a beautiful way to end our March "C" theme, Mary. You've written a beautiful poem to celebrate what Jesus has done for us. Yes, the cross does point us to the way we should go.

    1. Thank you for your comments Sandy!

  4. What an incredibly deep and touching work of art! Thank you so much for blessing me with it today.

    1. I am so thankful this blessed you today. Always my prayer that others can be drawn closer to Christ💞

  5. Poignant, powerful and perfect for us to remember why we can say. “Christ is risen. He is risen indeed, Hallelujah.”

    1. Thank you for your comments! Yes He is risen indeed!!🙏✝️

  6. Beautifully written and so meaningful!

  7. Thank you for this wonderful poetic picture of the supreme sacrifice for our redemption. Absolutely beautiful.


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