Living a life that’s worthy of the gospel begins with holding firmly to the Word of Life—instead of focusing on our own strengths and weaknesses. When we do so, we enable God to work within us to do what pleases Him (Philippians 2:14). That’s what causes us to shine like stars in the darkness—when we direct our gaze, and the gaze of others, towards the light of Christ.
Title: Hunting for the Truth of Easter
Artwork by: Elroi Teo and YMI
Description: We are in a constant search for something, whether it be the meaning of life or the reason for our existence. But this Easter, let us search through the Bible as we rediscover the significance of Easter, and why Jesus is the only one worth searching for.
Judas was searching for earthly treasures. But soon learned the consequences of his actions.
Thirty pieces of silver was all it took for Judas to betray Jesus. When his act of treachery was discovered, Judas felt remorseful and returned the thirty pieces of silver to the chief priests and the elders. He confessed he had sinned, and innocent blood had been betrayed in the process. Judas’s story is an example of the dangers of an unguarded heart, of a heart that wants what it wants. We are to guard our hearts to prevent ourselves from being swept away by the currents of temptation, or in Judas’s case, exchanging Jesus for fleeting earthly treasures such as status, or material wealth. What can we do today to guard our hearts in the face of temptation, and to stand firm in Jesus?
Peter was looking for a way to show Jesus his love for him. But ended up denying Jesus.
Peter trusted in his own strength when he told Jesus he would not betray him. Yet Peter went on to deny Jesus three times before the rooster crowed. Peter wept bitter tears when he realized what he had done, and asked Jesus to forgive him. Like Peter, none of us are perfect, and as willing as we are to love Jesus perfectly, our weaknesses and failures often become our stumbling block. Fortunately, we are able to bring all these to the cross, and Jesus will meet us there to restore and refresh us. Will we look to Jesus today as the only one who refreshes and restores us?
Two thieves were looking for salvation. But only one accepted His invitation.
We often cry to God to save us from earthly struggles, but find it incredibly hard to believe we have already been saved from our struggles. We tell Jesus to remember us in Heaven, forgetting the invitation has already been extended to us. Jesus died on the cross for our salvation, and that means we are now able to spend eternity with Him in paradise. But when we think of heaven, do we think of it as simply a place where there will be no more tears and suffering? Or do we look forward to heaven because we get to be with Jesus, and to worship Him?
Mary (Jesus’ mother) and Mary were seeking for Jesus’ body. But all they found was an empty tomb.
Jesus’ mom and Mary were upset and disappointed when they discovered His tomb was empty. But they were met by an angel, who told them the one they are looking for has risen. Upon hearing this, the women rejoiced. Like them, we too can rejoice, in knowing Jesus has overcome death at the cross, and rejoice in knowing death no longer has any power or hold on us. We should constantly remind ourselves that the Lord has indeed risen, and the resurrected Christ is still very much alive today. It can be easy to tune our hearts out to Jesus, and relegate him to the dusty recesses of our minds. But let us keep Him alive in our hearts today.
Thomas was looking for evidence that Jesus has risen. But his encounter with Jesus revealed his doubt and unbelief.
It is hard to believe in something we cannot see, but this is where faith comes in. We have to believe that Jesus has risen, and that He is alive. If you are struggling with unbelief, call out to God to show you that he is real. He wants us to know the truth, and He will reveal Himself to us in due time. Let us cast aside our unbelief, and reach out to Jesus.
Title: Exploring Easter’s Treasures
Artwork by: Zach Stuef (@stuefcreative) and YMI
Description: It can be easy to think of Easter as simply being made up of hot cross buns, Easter bunnies, chocolate eggs, and long weekends. However, Easter is about reminding ourselves of what Jesus had done at the cross, where He laid His life down for us. The reason for our existence is found at the cross. His death was the crux of salvation, and His resurrection is the assured hope of that salvation.
Follow us on this journey from Palm Sunday to Easter Monday as we explore the significance of each day. Each day’s artwork is also available for download as lockscreens (simply click on the image).
PALM SUNDAY | He endured the cross for the joy that was set before Him
Jesus’ visit to Jerusalem was not a social call. When he entered Jerusalem, he was on a mission to fulfil God’s perfect plan – to die in Jerusalem for our sake. Jesus embodies his Father’s love for sinners, and he knew the time had come for him to lay his life down on the cross for us. The walk to Calvary would have been hard, yet Jesus was steadfast as he set his face on Jerusalem. His act reminds us as believers that our Christian-walk may not always be an easy one, but we are called to carry our cross and follow him. Like Jesus, we are to set our eyes on the cross, even if we are buffeted by life’s daily troubles. Staying the course can be difficult, so let us encourage one another as we press our way forward to follow the King of Kings on the road to Calvary.
MAUNDY THURSDAY | Anticipating the return of Jesus
Jesus dined with his disciples on the night before his execution on the cross. This is known as the Last Supper, or Communion, and as his disciples shared on unleavened bread and wine, they were doing it in remembrance of Christ. Jesus then surprised his disciples by washing their feet, thus setting an example of how we are to lead our Christian lives. We are called to serve one another in love and in humility. It is not a command that is always easy to follow, but with Christ as our example, let us find ways to fulfil this commandment.
GOOD FRIDAY | The power of the Cross
How do we view the cross? Do we see it as an instrument of torture, or as a symbol of hope, love, and redemption? Jesus was crucified for our sins so we can spend eternity with him. It is also at the cross where we can lay bare our brokenness, sin and shame, in exchange for fullness, joy and a cleansed heart – this is the beauty of the cross. What areas of our lives that we are finding hard to crucify? Whatever it is that you may be struggling with, bring them all to Jesus, call on to him, and he will draw near to you.
EASTER SUNDAY | Jesus holds our eternity in his hands
Jesus defeated death when he rose again on the third day, and his resurrection is the crux of the Christian faith. Jesus’ resurrection displayed both his power and glory, and with it comes the promise of eternal hope, life, and a glorious inheritance which awaits us at the end of our Christian race. And did you know, the same power that rose Jesus from the dead is also available to us believers? But do we fully understand the power of God, and how aware are we of its working in our lives and the lives of others?
Sometimes we can lose sight of what God’s doing in our lives, but here’s a verse we can hold on to during times when it’s difficult to see what He’s doing behind the scenes. If we keep remaining in Him, we can be confident that He “who began a good work in [us] will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus” (Philippians 1:6).
YMI (which stands for Why Am I?), is a platform for Christian young people all over the world to ask questions about life and discover their true purpose. We are a community with different talents but the same desire to make sense of God’s life-changing word in our everyday lives.
YMI is a part of Our Daily Bread Ministries.
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