April 2, 2015
Then Jesus went with them to a place called Gethsemane, and he said to his disciples, “Sit here, while I go over there and pray.” And taking with him Peter and the two sons of Zebedee, he began to be sorrowful and troubled. Then he said to them, “My soul is very sorrowful, even to death; remain here, and watch with me…
…And going a little farther he fell on his face and prayed, saying, “My Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me; nevertheless, not as I will, but as you will.” Matthew 26:36-46
I stood upon the foot of the Mount of Olives, and made my way through the garden, the very one where Jesus was betrayed and arrested. There eight olive trees stand, tall and strong. They are said to be the silent witnesses of Jesus’ prayer and suffering the evening before His crucifixion. I was fixated on their roots and trunks. Thinking how small they must have been when Jesus sat near them, heavy burdened with a sorrowful soul, even to death. I found myself dwelling upon the words He prayed that night in the garden. I couldn’t help but think of how often my prayers are incomplete. It is easy for me to recognize The Lord’s faithfulness when he answers prayers, heals wounds, performs miracles – when He takes our cup from us so that we suffer no more. But that wasn’t the case for Jesus. He doesn’t get his miracle. Rather, he is betrayed by a friend and sentenced to death. He carries the weight of the very cross he will hang from while life slowly drips from his being. He enters in to the depths of sorrow instead of being given a chance to escape them. What would have happened had the Lord answered Jesus’ plea to take his cup from him? My mind has never thought so intently on how powerful this is. Jesus had to die so that He could rise. He had to suffer so that redemption could be made full. And in doing so, he knows what it is like for his people when they, too, don’t get their miracle. It is in the midst of sorrow, darkness, and death that The Lord redeems his people. Our Savior comes as a result of saying “not as I will, but as you will”. Oh, the hope that brings to my spirit. May we look to the Cross not ending our prayers with our pleas, but with hearts that desire Thy will be done over our own.
April 2, 2015