He went on a little farther and bowed with his face to the ground, praying, "My Father! If it is possible, let this cup of suffering be taken away from me. Yet I want your will to be done, not mine."
~ Matthew 26:30
For me, watching Jesus' journey to the cross is filled with moments where I recognize both Jesus as God's son, and also, when he is fully human. Seeing Jesus praying in the garden for the things that are about to happen to him to not happen, leads me to the times in my life when I realize the only way to deal with something is to simply "go through it."
We all have some understanding of what this is like. Knowing what lies ahead, and praying to God, "Please, let this pass from me."
I find that my mind has difficulty "shutting down." Sometimes, there is simply uneasiness that happens in our lives. It's not that we worry about anything in particular. The future that Jesus knew would happen had to give birth to new anxieties each day.
While I don't walk the path that Jesus did, knowing betrayal, arrest, beatings and crucifixion was in his future, I still understand what it means to live with uneasiness.
None of us can truly imagine what that must have been like for Jesus, however, we do know what it's like to "work through" or "experience" life.
For me, as difficult as it is to see Jesus so human, the experiences of Jesus also serve as a reminder to us that God has "been there, done that."
Knowing that God dwelt among us through Jesus, I realize that God has felt the sun shine upon his face, watch dust from road swirl up into the air, smell flowers blooming nearby, while also knowing the salty taste of his own tears, as he cried at the tomb of a friend. God truly knows us.
Our ability to arrive at the other side of an illness, job loss, or any kind of a personal struggle, serves to remind us that while not all cups are like that which Jesus prayed would pass, we are offered vessels to take up and drink.
Today I pray that we become one with God through Christ, who will provide the strength to make it through whatever cup passes before us.
Stay in God's grip!
G. Todd Williams (c) 2020
Rev. G. Todd Williams lives in the Houston metro area and is a Hospice Chaplain and ordained Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) pastor.