So, I’ll cherish the old rugged cross, till my trophies at last I lay down. And I will cling to the old rugged cross, and exchange it some day for a crown”

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The cross of Jesus Christ is the best-known symbol of Christianity across the world. We see it everywhere inside and outside of the church: on crystal jewelled necklaces, atop high steeples, on minivan bumper stickers, tattooed on wrists and wistfully painted within art pieces.

But, despite their cultural artistic popularity, the message of the cross remains ever more sacred than a simple icon. The cross is a subversive, countercultural statement: it represents unmatched sacrifice, humility and a King who puts the last first.

Through this cross, Jesus abolished the sting of death—the cross is empty, the grave is barren! We are free in His name. In our daily lives, at our workplaces and schools, and behind pews, we have the privilege of singing a chorus of hope as one people:

“Oh, death, where is your victory? Where is your sting?”

So, in this Easter season, as we watch the earth spring forth with new growth mimicking the resurrection of its King, may these beautiful crosses all across the world remind you of how deep, how wide and how long, is the love of Christ!

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Tukon Church, Basco, Batanes, Philippines. Photo by Yvonne Assen.

“Jesus loved me and saw potential in me. He believed I was worth dying for, and indeed, He gave His life for me. When I did not trust myself, He valued me and gave me a new and meaningful life.”

– John Laba, Compassion Togo

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Sewaswe Birhan St.Paul Church, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. Photo by Mesfin Tesfaye.

“When Jesus saves us, He does not only save our souls. Nor does He only save our bodies. He saves our minds, our relationships, our emotions and our futures.”

– Barry Slauenwhite, Compassion Canada

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Compassion Centre in West Chiang Mai, Thailand. Photo by Sean Sheridan.

“He is not here; he has risen! Remember how he told you, while he was still with you in Galilee: ‘The Son of Man must be delivered over to the hands of sinners, be crucified and on the third day be raised again.’”

– Luke 24:6-7

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Historic church in Brazil. Photo by Chuck Bigger.

“The sacrificing love [of God] still touches personally the spirit, heart and soul of each one of us uniquely as God’s beloved creation.”

– Handoko Njadiman, Compassion Indonesia

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Awassa, Ethiopia. Photo by Sean Sheridan.

“All praise to God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. It is by his great mercy that we have been born again because God raised Christ Jesus from the dead.”

– 1 Peter 1:3

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Steps to a cross in Thailand. Photo by Jonathan L. Suwaratana.

“Jesus has already paid the price for our sins in such an amazing way. That should motivate us to leave sin behind us and persevere in Christ Jesus.”

– Cecilia Yepez, Compassion Ecuador

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Les Cayes, Haiti after Hurricane Matthew. Photo by Ryan Johnson.

“As much as I take comfort in knowing that Christ secured my eternity through His ultimate sacrifice, I also am very comforted knowing that as a human, Jesus experienced all of the sorrow, pain, suffering and grief that we all go through.”

 – Mark Hanlon, Compassion International

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Historic church in Bolivia. Photo by Chuck Bigger.

“But he was pierced for our rebellion and crushed for our sins. He was beaten so we could be whole. He was whipped so we could be healed.”

– Isaiah 53:5

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The Church of Saint George, Lalibela, Ethiopia. Photo by Sean Sheridan.

“The very foundation of my own relationship with Jesus is free. This is what we call ‘grace’: salvation for free. The fact that it is given freely like a scholarship should make my own response plain and simple: study hard and live it out hard.”

– David Beltran, Compassion Philippines

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Painting a mural of the cross in the Philippines. Photo by Edwin Estioko.

“Salvation is a gift. It was given to us for free, and through it, we become God’s masterpiece.”

– Nadia Sobernis, Compassion Guatemala

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Historic church in Brazil. Photo by Chuck Bigger.

“My old self has been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me. So, I live in this earthly body by trusting in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.”

– Galatians 2:20

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A Compassion centre in the Phillipines. Photo by Jonathan L. Suwaratana.

“The sacrificing love [of God] still touches personally the spirit, heart and soul of each one of us uniquely as God’s beloved creation.”

– Handoko Njadiman, Compassion Indonesia

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In this Easter season, may you remember, hold onto and walk forward in the freedom found in the death and resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ!

Written by: Laura Phillips

Laura Phillips is the Marketing Writer for Compassion Canada. She is passionate about pursuing justice and mercy through writing, crafting, music, and sharing stories over a cup of strong coffee.