So, is it just me or do these 3 chapters have your head spinning? There is so much happening here from Jesus sharing the future coming with his disciples, to the Passover Supper, the betrayal and the death on the cross. So many emotions in Jesus and his disciples. So much to take in and understand for those disciples. So much faith was needed.
And Jesus… In chapter 14, we get to see a very human side of Jesus. Let’s remember that Jesus knew all along what his fate was. He knew he was born to die a horrible death, in order to be the sacrificial lamb for all of mankind. He knew that his mission and ministry ended on the cross. Yet, in these last hours, he shows us an emotional, very human side. Verse 34 says, “My soul is crushed with grief to the point of death.” Verse 36 continues with Jesus in prayer. Jesus says, “Abba, Father, everything is possible for you. Please take this cup of suffering away from me. Yet, I want your will, not mine.”
In his final moments before he is betrayed, he reaches out to his Father in heaven and asks him to spare the death that is coming for him, but only if it is his will. And while we know God can do anything, he did not spare his son of the suffering. While this seems awful, it is what has saved each of us and it is what has given us a place in heaven with Jesus. Thank you Jesus for dying for us. Thank you God for sending us your son and for knowing what is best, even when we can’t see it.
I recall praying a similar prayer when my son was ill. He had brain cancer. From diagnosis to death it was only 30 days. I think it was 2 days before he died, I realized that he was not going to make it much longer. I remember so vividly standing in his hospital room hugging my husband. We prayed for a miracle. However, we also realized that God’s will may not be our will. We also prayed for strength to endure what was coming. It was one of the most difficult prayers I have prayed.
When I read that Jesus also prayed this same prayer, to spare him from the suffering and death, but only if it was God’s will, it made me feel good inside. Good isn’t really the right word here, but I can’t name the feeling at the moment. How many times do we pray for something and get angry, upset, mad or frustrated when we don’t get what we prayed for? Yet, even Jesus did not get what he prayed for. What makes us think we are better than Jesus? He sacrificed himself for us and yet, he did not get his last prayer request. He knew he wouldn’t be spared, yet he still prayed that prayer. I have to wonder if he did that to show us, about 2,000 years later, that we need to trust in God’s plan whether we understand it or not.
Thinking back to that dark, quiet night in the hospital room almost 8 years ago, God did answer my prayer. He did not send me a miracle and save my son from cancer, but he gave me and my husband a strength we never knew we had. He carried us through those dark days and continues to do so today. Your prayers may not be answered in the way you think they should be, but when you sit and reflect on them, you may realize they have been answered in another way.
Think of a time when you prayed for something and something else came out of it. Can you share with us? How did you feel at the time? How do you feel now, looking back at the situation? I think a prayer journal would be a great way to illustrate these situations. I just may need to start one!
Friday – Mark 13
Saturday – Mark 14
Sunday – Mark 15
Monday – Reflection
Tuesday – Praises & Petitions
Blessings my friends!