As a Protestant I grew up without any religious symbols. On some of my female Roman Catholic friends I sometimes noticed the cross around their necks but I didn't think much about it.
I started to appreciate the cross only recently. One day I was in a particular grumpy and frustrated state of mind. As quite often I had made an elephant out of a molehill, but of course in this moment I didn't see it that way.
Suddenly I remembered what Jesus had to suffer on the cross and I felt quite ashamed complaining and the elephant turned into a molehill.
Since this day I try to remember the suffering of Jesus on the cross when I start complaining about something and usually it helps me to put things into perspective.
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I still have my reading point. :)