Good Tuesday morning by dear brothers and sisters! I’m excited to share with you these thoughts that our Dad has laid on my heart regarding a passage of Scripture that I have read many times before. I’m pretty gabby today. Dad’s Words spoken to me can move me to action like nothing else. He definitely knows how to motivate me and get me all excited. He rocks! Today, we find that Jesus and His disciples have arrived at Gethsemane – one of His favorite places that He frequently visited which was an olive orchard on the lower slope of Mount Olives. I can so relate to His desire to be in God’s creation as I love being in the midst of it as well. In this setting, Jesus told His disciples “Sit here while I pray.” He was deeply distressed and troubled. He took with Him three of His closest disciples, Peter, James and John. Like Jesus, we all have lots of brothers and sisters in the family of God, but each of us usually have a small close circle of relationships of support that we tend to relate well to, feel confident in sharing with and tend to include in our troubled times. But given that, Jesus sets a good example, in that He broke away from His loved ones in His life for times of solitude with His Dad. Jesus confided in those close to Him by sharing His troubled heart when He said “My soul is overwhelmed with sorrow to the point of death.” He then told them “Stay here and keep watch.” In spiritual application of this, I see Him saying to those close to Him at this time when He needed solitude to please stay here (a place of physical distance, but with Him in thought or heart) and watch for the Lord’s guidance and also the enemies’ actions. It is always nice to know we are not alone in our battles in life even if those close to us are physically apart from us, but keeping us close in their thoughts. As the story continues, Jesus then fell to the ground, placing Himself in a lowly (humble) position before His Dad and He prayed, sharing His heart’s desire and asking His Dad to carry out His will for His life. When He returned to His disciples, He found them asleep and He ask them “Could you not even keep watch for one hour?” Jesus told His disciples to watch and pray so that they would not fall into temptation. Jesus went away a second time to pray and when He returned, He found His disciples sleeping again which left them not knowing what to say to Him. It is always hard when we realize that in going through life, we have overlooked someone’s needs. It is encouraging to know that we are not alone in this. This story points out there were three of them that did the same thing in overlooking Jesus’ request due to their tiredness. They had had a full day already. Again Jesus prayed and the third time He returned to His disciples, He said to them “Are you still sleeping and resting. Enough! The hour has come. Look, the Son of Man is betrayed into the hands of sinners. “Rise! Let us go! Here comes my betrayer!” This plants upon my heart the seeds that we as Christians have close ones in our life that are often going through troubling times and they need us to not be asleep (unalert) in life, but to be alert for how the enemy is at work in their life. It is easy for us to get so absorbed in our own lives that we don’t take the time to pray for them and we can miss the opportunity to fight the battle with them. Dad’s Words spoken here are a good reminder that we also need to not be sleeping as to what the enemy is doing in our own lives as well. We need to pray for ourselves that we do not fall into temptations in life. In Spirit, we may think that we are strong, but our flesh is weak; we are vulnerable to attack and we can easily fall. I think that one of the ways that the enemy works on us is to distract us from the real issues of importance in our lives – our relationships. It is in this way that he gains victory. So I ask you and I ask myself, what is happening in the lives of those closest to me that I need to be praying for them about so that the enemy doesn’t weaken them to the point of giving up on our Father’s will for them? For example: I have seen many times when the Devil works to betray people by crucifying them mentally for sins that they have fallen into for which Jesus bore the cup for and He has forgiven them for. This begs the question and challenge that if the God of the Universe forgives us and is for us, who can really stand against us or how can we rightly give someone else, the Devil or our self a stand against our Dad to say we are not worth forgiving? To do so is to say “Oh, huh” to the wisest of all!” It is to place our self above our Father in a position that we are not worthy to be in and when I do this to myself, I as a cowgirl see this as a high horse I need to say “whoa” to and get off of or it will take me on a ride that is a living H E double LL! YIKES!!! Just as Jesus needed, our loved ones need us to pray for them and encourage them to carry out our Father’s will. Are ya with me in these thoughts? I’m thinking it is important to rise and go for the sake of others by carving aside a specific time for prayer when I am not tired and falling asleep to pray for myself and others. Dad tells us that the prayers of a righteous man or woman are powerful and effective! When I look at the prayer of Jesus in Gethsemane, I see that Jesus was unique and the call on His life was different from ours. It was our Father’s will that the enemy’s plot to crucify Jesus be carried out. This meant that Jesus would take the cup of wrath, pay the wages of sin that gave Him the taste of death for all of mankind’s past, present and future sin once and for all. But then, the Father gave Jesus victory over the cup that brought death! This was an answer to what Jesus had prayed to have removed. Death could not hold Him! The Father honored His prayer and gave Him a risen life again. Whoohoo! Our Dad is so good! I just love Him for His kindness and sweetness to us in rescuing us from our sins! It is sweet victory in sweet Jesus – ya gotta love it! There is one poor sport, however, the Devil, the enemy (betrayer) who wants people today to be asleep in remembering that their sins are forgiven. When I don’t remember Jesus’ victory over my sin and His acceptance of me, the enemy can make me feel defeated, alone and wanting to give up. This cowgirl is fighting to the end and I am not going to let the enemy win in my life or the lives of my loved ones. So I’ve decided I am going to implement the following: 1) If I’m deeply distressed and troubled in life, I need to find someone close to talk with about it and ask them to pray for me. 2) I need to be alert to the needs of my loved ones and what it is that I need to be praying for them. 3) I need to pray often as Jesus did with His Dad, about what it is troubling me for others and myself and ask Him for strength and help to carry out His will, knowing He loves us and His will is the very best in the end. A part of that will is that I need to listen to what my Dad is telling me and not say “Oh, huh, I’ll believe my own way of thinking.” As I realize in my life, so I encourage you – we are not alone in life. There is one named Jesus who is stayed here with us in Spirit, yet seated at the right hand of God and is watching and praying for us; He never sleeps. He lives His life to make intercession for me and for you to help us choose the right and defeat the enemy, the Devil so that we can have victory in life. Why the thought of Him doing that for me and you makes me just want to do a little victory dance to kick off this day! Are ya with me? Yeehaw!
Mk 14:32-42; 1 Pe 5:6-11; Ja 4:7, 5:13-16; 1 Jn 1:9; Pr 3:5; Ro 6:23, 8:26-29; Jn 3:16, 5:24;
Ps 121:4; He 7:23-25;