It must have been an scene of extreme agony. Jesus and the disciples left the upper room to go to the garden called Gethsemane. Jesus praying to The Father, while the disciples were supposed to be there in support. The scene as reported in Matthew goes something like this…
Then Jesus went with
his disciples to a place called Gethsemane, and he said to them, "Sit
here while I go over there and pray." He took Peter and the two sons of Zebedee along with him, and he began to be sorrowful and troubled. Then he said to them, "My soul is overwhelmed with sorrow to the point of death. Stay here and keep watch with me."
a little farther, he fell with his face to the ground and prayed, "My
Father, if it is possible, may this cup be taken from me. Yet not as I
will, but as you will."
Then he returned to his disciples and found them sleeping. "Could you men not keep watch with me for one hour?" he asked Peter. "Watch and pray so that you will not fall into temptation. The spirit is willing, but the body is weak."
went away a second time and prayed, "My Father, if it is not possible
for this cup to be taken away unless I drink it, may your will be
When he came back, he again found them sleeping, because their eyes were heavy. So he left them and went away once more and prayed the third time, saying the same thing.
he returned to the disciples and said to them, "Are you still sleeping
and resting? Look, the hour is near, and the Son of Man is betrayed
into the hands of sinners. Rise, let us go! Here comes my betrayer!" (Matthew 26:36-46)
I can't imagine.
There are times in my life when my heart is heavy and burdened with specific events, but I can't even begin to understand the psychological trauma going on in His being. Can you?
You know the times when you feel like you get punched in the gut, and there's nothing you can do for relief.
You might be worrying about something.
You might be recovering from a bad relationship.
Maybe even a natural disaster happens like what happened in Haiti yesterday, and you have a loved one down there, and you're waiting to hear from them.
You don't know what to do.
You feel like you're going to be sick.
The world turns in slow motion.
And all you need is someone to be there for you.
All you need is someone to reach out and support.
I can't imagine Jesus' anguish as He knew the cross was in the near future.
I CAN relate to the disciples, as they had no idea.
Jesus' humanity was certainly crying out for support, just a little touch of human encouragement.
The disciples didn't understand the end was coming near.
And all Jesus was asking for…to stay awake and pray.
There are so many times in life when we're hurting, and we just need someone to show support.
There are so many times in life when others are hurting, and they need us.
Relationships are built on these kids of interactions, people who hurt, and people who comfort.
It's a basic rule of knowing and being known.
We must be a people free to walk through the dark times in life.
But we must also be people who recognized when the dark times come in those around us.
We must be free to grieve and explore the hard times.
But we must also be a people able to pray, stay awake, reach out to comfort, and support those we love.
May we reach out to others in our grief.
May we support those who are suffering.
May we see the God of the Universe as even He was able to walk through dark times with friends.
May we be a people who can stay awake during those dark times.