My soul is very sorrowful, even to death.

And they went to a place called Gethsemane. And he said to his disciples, “Sit here while I pray.” And he took with him Peter and James and John, and began to be greatly distressed and troubled. And he said to them, “My soul is very sorrowful, even to death. Remain here and watch.” And going a little farther, he fell on the ground and prayed that, if it were possible, the hour might pass from him. And he said, “Abba, Father, all things are possible for you. Remove this cup from me. Yet not what I will, but what you will.” [Mark 14:32-36 ESV]

My first wife Ellen suffered heart and kidney failure when she was 39. My kids and I watched her slowly die the following four years. Every day I fervently prayed for her healing. Yet a month before she died I found myself praying a prayer of both acceptance and release. I committed Ellen into the loving hands of Almighty God and said that whatever He wanted was OK with me. It was one of the toughest prayers that I have ever prayed.

Such is the prayer that we see Jesus praying in the garden. He was visibly distressed and troubled. His disciples could actually see it on his face. Sorrowful, painful and troubling words come from his mouth as the Son wrestles in prayer with the Father. As he prays we begin to understand what it is like to pray in impossible times. When he ends saying "not what I will, but what you will" he paints a glorious picture of what it means to pray.

I offer my sorrows up to you again today Lord. Not my will but thine be done.

1 comment:

  1. Thank you for this. I had to pray that way when my mom was dying of Alzhiemer's, and I've recently had to regarding a close friendship that had de-railed. It's tough.


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