Protestants seem to prefer an unadorned, empty cross, pointing as it does to the glory that is Easter, when the risen Lord demonstrates that He did not die in vain.
Although I now consider myself Protestant, my preference remains the Crucifix, showing the suffering Lord. A reminder that while we live, we are on the earthly side of the cross. It is only after death that we may hope for joining the risen Christ.
Some people just say that Catholics are pessimists, gloomy, focus too much on suffering. I say that Catholics, and many of us who consider ourselves Calvinist Protestants, know that life can be nasty and all-too short.
Best prepare ourselves as best we can to live a life that our Lord might approve of. Spiritually, mentally, physically.
Note I said “might.” I make no claims…