With Easter just around the corner, I’ve been pondering the significance of the cross.
Everything I am and everything I stand for is connected to the cross of Jesus Christ.
His death gives me life; His resurrection gives me hope.
I am grateful both of my children accepted Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior in recent years.
It is a joy to watch their childlike faith blossom and bloom.
Family traditions are of the utmost importance to my oldest daughter.
They give her a sense of belonging, security, and joy.
I’ve been searching for a way to satisfy my daughter’s craving for family traditions that also sparks her growing faith.
My search proved fruitful and I am excited to share our new Easter tradition with you today.
On Good Friday, my family sits around our Surrender™ Cross and talks about the sacrifice Jesus made on our behalf.
We remember the tears Christ shed in the garden of Gethsemane, the heavenly plea recorded in Matthew 26:39.
“He fell with his face to the ground and prayed, “My Father, if it is possible, may this cup be taken from me. Yet not as I will, but as you will.”
Jesus ultimate act of surrender tore the veil between Heaven and Earth.
His death and resurrection gives us the right to be called sons and daughters of God (1 John 3:1).
“Behold, what manner of love the Father hath bestowed upon us, that we should be called the sons of God: therefore the world knoweth us not, because it knew him not.”
Jesus surrendered his will at the foot of the cross and so must we.
At the end of our discussion, each member of the family writes the words “I Surrender All” on a piece of paper and nails it to our family cross.
On Easter Sunday, after we celebrate the resurrection with our church family, we return to the cross We talk about how Jesus’ death and resurrection made it possible for us to receive the Holy Spirit (Ephesians 1:13-14).
“And you also were included in Christ when you heard the message of truth, the gospel of your salvation. When you believed, you were marked in him with a seal, the promised Holy Spirit, who is a deposit guaranteeing our inheritance until the redemption of those who are God’s possession–to the praise of his glory.”
And then we talk about how the Holy Spirit empowers us to live a life that honors God (Acts 1:8)
“But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.”
And then we read about the fruits of the Holy Spirit in Galatians 5:22-23.
“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law.”
After talking about the role of the Holy Spirit in our lives, we each pick one fruit of the Spirit we’d like to experience more of in the upcoming year.
Each person then writes their fruit on another piece of paper, and nails it to the cross (on top of their “I Surrender All” paper).
When we are finished, we hang our family cross back on the wall where it serves as a reminder of the importance of surrender and the power of the Holy Spirit.
It is my hope that this new Easter tradition teaches our children the importance of surrender and helps them better understand why we celebrate Easter.
I look forward to establishing this new family tradition and invite you to join me.
Normally when I feature a product or company on my blog, I receive a free sample in exchange for my honest review.
Not this time.
I paid full price for my Surrender™ Cross.
Because I wanted to support Jackie and Rick and their beautiful ministry.
And by the end of this article, you will too!
An Interview with Rick and Jackie of RAD JOY
The name of your company is RAD JOY. Can you tell me how you came up with the name and what your company’s mission is?
Rick: The HOW was a series of coincidences…or so I thought. Growing up in the 80’s with the name Richard Alan Drew, everybody called me “RAD” and it stuck! The “JOY” came from chapter 1 of Courtney DeFeo’s book which helped our family discover that joy is a choice.
The WHY has much more bearing. Perhaps the first and most obvious is the R and J (Rick and Jackie). The R is connected to and supported by the J through the cross of Jesus Christ. The real why, however, is what God wants for us: Radical Joy. When we unburden ourselves and allow the Son to do his job, we are made free to do ours. To emulate Him and praise our Father. It’s about the overflow of blessings and joy which blossom from within when we start to believe that He’s got this!
Your pillar product is the Surrender Cross. What makes this cross unique?
Rick: There are several aspects which set our product apart, I will highlight a few:
- It is not just another “pretty cross.” It is also functional, with the feature of removable nails.
- Our crosses are made from reclaimed wood. This makes each one unique and embodies the significance of “the old has been made new.”
- We weave God into every aspect of the Cross. The number of nails in a small cross, 3. A standard cross, 7. Both Biblical numbers. We even price the crosses in increments of $7.
- The signature Trinity Mark that is cut into each cross. It serves to remind us that we have not one, but three in our corner, rooting for us.
I think it’s so cool how you invite your kids to pray over the crosses before you ship them out. How did this tradition start and how has it impacted your family life?
Jackie: Shortly, after we started RAD JOY, we knew that we wanted our children involved as much as possible. Our two oldest children write down different virtues on sheets of paper and then we draw one to pray over each cross before we give them to our customers.
It’s been neat to watch our children grow confident in their praying! This year, our oldest son has given several crosses as gifts and it’s the sweetest thing to hear him praying over them.
What is the biggest challenge of running your own business from home?
Jackie: With us being a new business, we are definitely in the hustle stage. The biggest challenge for me is (haha) surrendering my perfectionism. I want to be the best mom, wife, homemaker, and business owner, and yet, I often feel that I’m dropping the ball. With work being so busy right now, it’s very hard for me to balance everything, but I do believe that it’s getting better with time.
Share one thing the Lord has taught you through this experience of stepping out in faith and launching your own business?
Jackie: On May 3, 2016, I called Rick in the morning and asked him if he thought we could ever go full time with our Surrender™ Crosses. We did a quick calculation and thought it was a possibility but also didn’t want to quit his current job. That afternoon, he was laid off from his job. When he got home and told me what had happened, we immediately knew that God wanted us to pursue RAD JOY 100%. We started our company that night.
The next 6 months were some of the hardest of our lives. We realized that in order to help others, we too needed to surrender a lot. It’s one thing to preach a life surrendered. It’s another thing to live it. I believe that God allowed many challenging circumstances into our life to remind us He is control and He will take care of us—no matter what happens.
What are your hopes, dreams, and aspirations for RAD JOY and the Surrender Crosses?
Rick: Our hope is that our business can be blessed to the extent that it allows us to establish a non for profit version of RAD JOY, so that we can give more of ourselves and our products. We pray that our business is a lighthouse to others that makes our Master proud!
And finally, how does your family use the crosses? Do you have any special traditions for Easter?
Jackie: We write down our burdens on a sheet of paper, pull the removable nails from the cross, and pierce our burdens to the cross. It’s a beautiful thing to write out your prayers and to physically let them go! It’s also a great reminder when you walk by and see your concerns on the cross. He’s got this!!
When prayers are answered, we take them off the cross and put them in our Faithfulness Jar. This has been WONDERFUL for us to remember to praise God for all that He is doing.
We read a book by Courtney Defeo where she suggests writing down your sins and nailing them to the cross during lent and then Easter morning, take them all down and replace with flowers. I think this would be a fantastic Easter tradition for any family.
RAD JOY crosses vary in price from just $14 for the Small – Natural Crosses up to $84 for their Limited Edition Crosses. They also build larger custom crosses for churches and Christian organizations.
Jackie and Rick are generously offering a 15% discount on all of their crosses through April 10, 2017 when you use the discount code “easter15” at checkout.
On top of that, one lucky reader will receive a free Signature Cross of their choice. Be sure to enter below for your chance to win!
It has been an honor and a privilege to share Rick and Jackie’s story with you today.
I love it when God’s people step out in faith and use their gifts for His glory.
I am super excited to start our new Easter Tradition and I do hope you will join me.
What is your most cherished family tradition? I’d love to hear about it in the comments.
This article has been shared at my favorite Faith & Family Linkups.