Mark – The Facts.
Even when you know the road will get bumpy, you must keep moving ahead to get to the destination, trying to dodge construction signs and known potholes. You try to think of another way to get there but the road is worse than the first. Traffic, don’t you love it? We do that with our lives. When the way gets rough, we try to avoid it, think of ways around it, or deny it. We want to be in charge and control it…but we cannot.
The bigger question is this, “What does God want?” Jesus knew the road was going to go from bad to worse in his final days on earth so He goes to prayer, his lifeline to God the Father. Jesus asks for a different way but follows immediately with the profound question for us, “What do YOU want?” God answers that prayer among the lethargic disciples with a betrayer and ultimately the Cross. Oh, what a Savior!
Yes, our journeys will take some scary curves with pits along the way but if our prayer is consistently, “what do YOU want, Father?”, then we can bear whatever comes along on our own journeys to our final destinations. Jesus has redeemed us. God has made The Way, the only Way, back to Him. Is the road easy? Nope. But necessary for our growth, maturity and intimacy with God, our Father.
Mark 14, The Message
32-34 They came to an area called Gethsemane. Jesus told his disciples, “Sit here while I pray.” He took Peter, James, and John with him. He plunged into a sinkhole of dreadful agony. He told them, “I feel bad enough right now to die. Stay here and keep vigil with me.”
35-36 Going a little ahead, he fell to the ground and prayed for a way out: “Papa, Father, you can—can’t you?—get me out of this. Take this cup away from me. But please, not what I want—what do you want?”
37-38 He came back and found them sound asleep. He said to Peter, “Simon, you went to sleep on me? Can’t you stick it out with me a single hour? Stay alert, be in prayer, so you don’t enter the danger zone without even knowing it. Don’t be naive. Part of you is eager, ready for anything in God; but another part is as lazy as an old dog sleeping by the fire.”
39-40 He then went back and prayed the same prayer. Returning, he again found them sound asleep. They simply couldn’t keep their eyes open, and they didn’t have a plausible excuse.
41-42 He came back a third time and said, “Are you going to sleep all night? No—you’ve slept long enough. Time’s up. The Son of Man is about to be betrayed into the hands of sinners. Get up. Let’s get going. My betrayer has arrived.”
Jesus’ agonizing prayer was sealed with a kiss from his betrayer.
Jesus paid it all, all to Him I owe. Jesus set the example for what we should ask each morning, “Father, what do YOU want?” Then get ready for the answer. Where God guides, He does provide.
Dear Heavenly Father,
In tough times and good times, You are there. Thank you. When we doubt or wonder, You are there. Thank you. When we need guidance, Your Holy Spirit whispers direction. Thank you. When we were lost, You saved us. Thank you.
In Jesus Name, Amen