Meaning of the mysterious cross-shaped grass at Juba Teaching Hospital

Posted: December 12, 2017 by PaanLuel Wël Media Ltd. in Columnists, Commentary, Contributing Writers, Junub Sudan, Manyang David Mayar, Opinion Articles, Opinion Writers

By Manyang David Mayar, Juba, South Sudan

Cross

The mysterious cross-shaped grass at Juba Teaching Hospital

December 12, 2017 (SSB) — Last week, Juba was shaken by the appearance of a green grass that grew in form of a Christian Cross at Juba Teaching Hospital. Eyewitnesses say, the grass wasn’t there the previous day but just appeared the following morning after one of the ladies saw a vision in her sleep.

In the following days, thousands of Juba residents poured into the hospital to witness for themselves. Upon seeing it, some bowed down to it and worshiped it as if they had seen Christ. Others willingly gave offertory in a carton box. And by a word of mouth the message of the Green Grass Cross spread quickly like wildfire to everybody. It rapidly dominated public talk in the streets of Juba and in public transport buses.

Many people agree that it was a miracle. But each person could only give his or her own interpretation of what the GGC miracle actually means. Other groups of people simply disagreed and refer it as false and misleading. As for me, I don’t know what exactly happened and how it happened. But I believe that God has a power of speaking to the people of South Sudan by the use of sign just like He (God) has done in the past in the stories of the Bible.

In this article, I am going to give my interpretation that was revealed to me by the Holy Spirit. I pray that God will give you the same Spirit for you to be able to understand the meaning of the mysterious Green Grass Cross. Before I give you my interpretation about the GGC, I would like to share some spotlight on cases when God was able to use signs in order to communicate to man in the Bible.

Here are just a few:

  • The rainbow as the sign of God’s covenant with us that he will never again destroy the earth by a flood (Genesis 9:13),
  • The placement of the twelve stones in the River Jordan to remind the Israelite of the crossing God had provided for them as a sign and memorial. (Joshua 4:3-8)
  • The star of Bethlehem to signify the birth of Christ (Matthew 2:2).
  • The dove to signify the Spirit’s presence at Jesus’ baptism (John 1:32).
  • The handwriting on the wall as a warning to King Belshazzar son of King Nebuchadnezzar about the end of his kingdom (Daniel 5:5)

Having in mind that God has been using signs to talk directly to human beings, I think you can be convinced that He (God) can still use signs in our generation to talk to us in South Sudan about what He wants us to do. For that reasons, some of us are quiet too serious to know what the GGC actually means. Here is my interpretation.

The interpretation

In South Sudan, the cross is an obvious sign. It is well known to almost everybody. You can see it visible on about 99 percent of our churches today. Even Pentecostal Churches now days are placing the wooden cross in front of their churches. Many of us are wearing it on our necks in silver, golden and other metallic forms. Most of our fathers, mothers, grandfathers, and grandmothers have it in wooden forms.

They carry it to church every Sunday and sleep with it on their beds. We brag about it as a sign to show that we are Jesus’ followers. But very few of us understand the cost of carrying the cross. That is why the Green Grass Cross (GGC) appeared to make us revisit our Bibles and explore the meaning of what the cross and the cost of carrying it.

In the book of Matthew Chapter 16, verse 24 and 25, Jesus said to his disciples, “If anyone wants to become my follower, he must deny himself, take up his cross and follow me.”

In this Chapter Jesus clearly stated three simple steps for one to qualify and become his true disciples. The first one is; the person must ‘deny himself or herself. For simple understanding, the word, ‘deny’ here means to reject or to get rid of all the desires of our own hearts.

Jesus said for us to qualify to become his followers, we must first reject and disallow evil things we do. Things like fighting one another, like revenge in our hearts, like corruption, like injustices, like hatred, like tribalism, like gossiping, like killings and shedding of drops of blood and so much more than our human heart desires.

For this reason, Jesus is urging those who want to follow him in South Sudan not to rush to the symbolic cross, but to first get rid of their pleasures. Are we doing this in South Sudan? When was the last time you pardoned someone that wronged you? When was the last time you chose to do right over what your heart says it was right to do?

After getting rid of these things in our lives, we can then take up our cross and follow Him.

“The power of Christians is the power of the cross, the power of Christ’s love that does not give up when faced with suffering”, Fr. Rivero Jordi said in one of his articles.

For a very long time, Satan has been using our fears as people of South Sudan to make us retreat when faced with the cross related actions. We fear to suffer for doing what is right. For example, depending on the innocent. And we also fear giving up our self-pleasure. We break into someone house at night even with the cross hanging on our necks.

When someone sees you during the day, you look like a Christ follower but your deeds and mind is far from him. We fill churches to the brim on Sundays carrying and wearing our crosses and praying to God to heal our country and to bring peace and freedoms. And God sent the Green Grass Cross as the answer.

It was meant to tell us – people of South Sudan that there is only one way to freedom and from all the hardship we are facing in this country. And that is to look at Jesus Crucified on the cross and be moved by His love to suffer with Him. Once we choose to love, they may crucify us but they can do us no harm. This is the “word of the Cross…the power of God according to St. Paul (I Corinthians 1:18). It puts to death the rebelliousness of our flesh so that we can live the new life in Christ.

To take up the cross isn’t actually the physical cross but sharing in Jesus’ suffering and victory on the cross by doing what is good. Jesus wants His followers to maintain his standard. He wants us to accept suffering in the face of striving to always do what is good even to the point of death.

After denying ourselves the desires of our hearts and then take up our crosses in sharing of his suffering on the cross, we can then follow him and have no doubt to declare that we are Christians, we belong to Jesus and we are His disciples.

Unfortunately, many of us in South Sudan, have jumped the first step, (denying self) and we have rushed to make ourselves beautiful crosses and boasting about being Christ’s followers. And therefore God has to send the Green Grass Cross as a renewal and revival of our faith in him.

The miracle of the cross happened so that we revise our faith status on how we are actually following Christ as South Sudanese. Are we getting rid of tribalism, of killings, of corruption, of injustices, of stealing and other immoral acts amongst us?

Therefore my dear brothers and sisters, instead of rushing to bow down to the Green Grass Cross and worshiping it or even make a church on it, we need to understand the sign and repent of our sins with immediate effect. I would like to conclude with this quote by Benedict XVI.

“The way of the cross is, in fact, the only way that leads to the victory of love over hate, of sharing over egoism, of peace over violence. In this context, the Lord asks the Love Crucified Community, suffer all with me, no longer two but one in my sacrifice of love.”

Instead of hating ourselves, let’s take the love of Jesus to overcome hate. Instead of violence and fighting one another let us take peace in our hearts to overcome violence. If loving one another is hard and make us suffer, let us sacrifice ourselves for it as Jesus did on the cross.

In a few days away, the new round of the peace revitalization is going to kick off in Addis Ababa Ethiopia. But before it starts, the Lord wants us to get rid of our self-pleasures, to get rid of divisions according to our tribes, to get rid of divisions according to our parties, to get rid of the past, to get rid of revenge, to forgive that person who killed your mother, to forgive those people who destroyed your villages and displace you out of your home and finally take love to overcome hate and peace to overcome violence.

It is always hard to forgive those who hurt us but that is the suffering that Jesus wants us to share with him. He accepted to go on the cross because of our sins.

The author can be reached by email at manyang.davidmayar@gmail.com

The opinion expressed here is solely the view of the writer. The veracity of any claim made is the responsibility of the author, not PaanLuel Wël: South Sudanese Bloggers (SSB) website. If you want to submit an opinion article or news analysis, please email it to paanluel2011@gmail.com. SSB do reserve the right to edit material before publication. Please include your full name, email address and the country you are writing from, plus a concise biography of yourself.

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Comments
  1. SPLA OYEEE says:

    The only meaning I can say about that green grass cross is that: that place may be a grave yard for some people murdered and buried there at night by unknown gunmen. So, try to dig it up and you mau see wonders beneath that grass. The people secretly buried there may be God’s followers and God want to show you where there are.
    Thank you,
    SPLA OYEEE

    Like

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