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Walking into Gethsemane

Walking into Gethsemane

Then Jesus came with them to a place called Gethsemane, and said to the disciples, “Sit here while I go and pray over there.” (Mt 26:36)

In His last days on earth, Jesus showed to His disciples, and to us, a rarely seen side—one we certainly would not expect upon first examining His life. It was a face of distress and of fear that caused sweat to fall from His body like drops of blood.

Before Jesus walked into the hands of the Sanhedrin, before He walked the long road to Golgotha, He spent time in the garden of Gethsemane and knelt down to pray. He was unafraid of pouring His soul out to God. The first words that tumbled from His lips were not of blessing or thanksgiving, but of desperate fear and great distress.

He was scared, and the first one He turned to for comfort was God. He felt anguish, and the first thing He did was kneel down to pray. He felt sorrow, and the first thing He prayed for was mercy according to the will of God.

For many, overcoming these emotions is not an easy process. Some gloss over them. Some mask them behind smiling faces. Some turn to alcohol or to drugs. Some sink into depression.

Jesus shows and proves to us that there was only one thing He needed to do to overcome His anxieties: He walked into Gethsemane and prayed.

Do not be afraid to walk into your Gethsemane. We are not obliged to smile in the face of tribulation. There is no shame in pouring our tears out before the Lord and asking for His help. If we feel inhibited in our prayers or feel that we are wading too deeply in sin to pray, then we are turning our faces from the very solution to our distress.

No matter how undeserving we feel or how deeply mired in sin we are, we need only take a step into our Gethsemane and unashamedly cry out to God, just as Jesus did.

Question for Reflection:

When you are in great distress, do you first turn to God in prayer?

Author: Alethea Chan