Jesus in the Garden of Gethsemane
Matthew 26:35-46 (words of Jesus in red)
36 Then Jesus came with them to a place called Gethsemane, and said to the disciples, “Sit here while I go and pray over there.” 37 And He took with Him Peter and the two sons of Zebedee, and He began to be sorrowful and deeply distressed. 38 Then He said to them, “My soul is exceedingly sorrowful, even to death. Stay here and watch with Me.” 39 He went further and fell on His face, and prayed, saying, “O My Father, if it is possible, let this cup pass from Me; nevertheless, not as I will, but as You will” 40 Then He came to the disciples and found them sleeping, and said to Peter, “What? Could you not watch with Me one hour?” 41 “Watch and pray, lest you enter into temptation. The spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak.” 42 Again, a second time, He went away and prayed, saying, “O My Father, if this cup cannot pass from Me unless I drink it, Your will be done.” 43 And He came and found them asleep again, for their eyes were heavy. 44 So He left them, went away again, and prayed a third time, saying the same words. 45 Then He came to His disciples and said to them, “Are you still sleeping and resting? Behold, the hour is at hand, and the Son of Man is being betrayed into the hands of sinners. 46 “Rise, let us be going. See, My betrayer is at hand.”
When in our tests/trials, when all is against us, and we feel like we can’t go on, let’s be real with God in prayer. Tell Him exactly how you feel. If you feel weak, say “Lord, I feel weak.” If you are afraid, say so! Don’t try to impress God. He knows your words and thoughts before you even speak and think them (Psalm 139:1-4). It is a sign of closeness to God when you are free to express your true feelings to Him. This is something that I am aspiring to.
Look at Jesus in the garden of Gethsemane. Jesus, God’s only begotten Son, felt so sorrowful (verse 38) that He asked God to spare Him going to the cross! Can you imagine that? Can you imagine Jesus not dying at Calvary for our sins? Where would we be today? He told God the Father exactly how He felt…and He did it 3 times – the same words. Don’t feel like you are bothering God if you say the same prayer over and over. Note an important part of Jesus’ prayer, “nevertheless…” (verse 39) Jesus didn’t allow how He felt to undermine His purpose…that God’s will be done. As I was writing the article, the Lord also pointed me to something else. This passage shows that Jesus valued relationships. You can see from His words in verses 38 and 40 that He wanted the closest of His disciples to be with Him in His difficulty. Friends are important. A good friend in your darkest hour can encourage you and share with you. The Lord can use your friends to help you in so many ways.
When you feel down and out, say “Lord, I feel ‘xyz’, but I am determined to live for you, to do your will in my life!” After His genuine prayer, Jesus was changed. He was strengthened. Notice in verses 45 and 46…”Rise…” He was ready to go ahead with the divine plan of salvation.