I am again faced with both Jesus' deity and His humanity.
His humanity is right there as I read His words of dread and anguish in the 38th & 39th verses (MSG):
Then he said, "This sorrow is crushing my life out. Stay here and keep vigil with me."
39 Going a little ahead, he fell on his face, praying, "My Father, if there is any way, get me out of this. But please, not what I want. You, what do you want?"
Have you ever dreaded anything?
Although I certainly try not to live that way, sometimes yucky stuff just happens. Worse than that, sometimes I know in advance when something really bad is coming my way, and that's when those feelings of dread rise up within me.
You know what I really don't appreciate when I'm struggling with dread? Someone coming along and blithely telling me "God's got it all in control sister". Even though it's true, I feel even more alone when I'm given a quick fix like that. What I really long for is for someone to come alongside me, to wait with me, to just be with me through the tough times.
Somehow I just can't see Jesus trivializing someone's pain and dread. I'm reminded of how in Hebrews 2:17-18 and in Hebrews 4:14-16 I'm told that Jesus can understand and help me because He has gone through suffering and testing, and because He knows what it's like to be in weak human form. As I look at Gethsemane I can see that He understands what it's like to dread something.
As I look at Gethsemane I'm grateful. Grateful that Jesus went ahead and went to the cross and suffered so that I can come before the Father due to Jesus' shed blood on my behalf. Grateful that I don't have to be alone in life because, just as He promised , He has given me His Spirit to live inside me. Grateful that He understands me and is with me through all of life.
What are you grateful for on this Wednesday of Holy Week?