Thursday, April 21, 2011

The Garden

Tomorrow we find ourselves at Good Friday. I have always been curious why it is called that since most of the world doesn’t understand that what happened is “good”. The picture I have sent along is one of the actual trees in the Garden of Gethsemane as it stands now. That tree is at least 2000 years old which means that Jesus saw that tree when he was in the garden pouring out his heart to the Father.

I can’t imagine walking into that garden to watch the scene unfold. Jesus has already spent many hours praying and eating one last time with his disciples. Judas has already left. He takes his “inner circle” with him a little farther into the garden to pray. Luke is my favorite account of the scene.

And he came out and went, as was his custom, to the Mount of Olives, and the disciples followed him. 40 And when he came to the place, he said to them, “Pray that you may not enter into temptation.” 41 And he withdrew from them about a stone’s throw, and knelt down and prayed, 42 saying, “Father, if you are willing, remove this cup from me. Nevertheless, not my will, but yours, be done.” 43 And there appeared to him an angel from heaven, strengthening him. 44 And being in an agony he prayed more earnestly; and his sweat became like great drops of blood falling down to the ground. 45 And when he rose from prayer, he came to the disciples and found them sleeping for sorrow, 46 and he said to them, “Why are you sleeping? Rise and pray that you may not enter into temptation.”

Luke 22:39-46 (ESV)

Since Luke was a physician it would make sense that he is the only writer who tells us about the drops of blood. What anguish he had to have been in to have sweat drops of blood. He knew with every fiber of his being that what was about to take place would be horrible. He did not want to go through such agony.

And he said, “Abba, Father, all things are possible for you. Remove this cup from me. Yet not what I will, but what you will.” Mark 14:36 (ESV)

I wonder if the angels held their collective breaths when Jesus asked for the cup to be removed from him? Will he or won’t he submit? I can picture them letting out their breath when he said “but what you will”! Submission is so hard. To give up our wills for the Father’s. It has to melt his heart when we like Jesus give up our wills for the Father’s plan.

Stay in the garden a while today for Friday is coming. We will need all the strength we can get with just being with the Master in this place.

Till then, In Christ Alone,

Jill

"Be the kind of woman that when your feet hit the ground each morning Satan says, "Oh crud, she's up"

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