(This post is dedicated to my friends….the ones who are standing by me as I walk into Gethsemane and face the pain. The ones who believe in me and my relationship with the Lord. The ones who know my gold before I walk in and when I walk out.)
I find myself in this this place and it’s dark, that moonless night kind of dark. The dark that only knows how to show the murkiness of the night. I know there is light, I just don’t know where to find it. I can sense something in the room with me. I know with my heart that standing before me is pain. And its enormous; a tremendous monster towering over me.
This isn’t the first time I have been in this place. I think I have been here often, I just chose to use vices instead of search for the light and this time feels different. I don’t want to use vices, I want to find the light.
So I start crying out. How do I conquer this pain? How do I process what is in front of me? How do I find peace? Where is the light?
The answer’s aren’t coming. Everything is staying black and obscure. Suddenly, a streak materializes across my face and a revelation comes.
I am in the Garden of Gethsemane. The same Gethsemane that Jesus was.
You see, before Jesus faced the greatest pain and death physically that I think we could ever imagine, he faced it emotionally.
The Message: Matthew 26:36
Then Jesus went with them to a garden called Gethsemane and told his disciples, “Stay here while I go over there and pray.” Taking along Peter and the two sons of Zebedee, he plunged into an agonizing sorrow. Then he said, “This sorrow is crushing my life out. Stay here and keep vigil with me.”
It says Jesus “plunged into an agonizing sorrow.” A sorrow that “is crushing my life out.” He faced the same emotional monster. In his fleshly form, he took on pain. And he was sad like we are sad. And he wept we weep. And he conquered it, like we are to conquer it. He didn’t pull on the vices of anger, he didn’t pull out the tub of Ben and Jerry’s or peanut butter and nuteulla sandwiches. He stayed in Gethsemane and cried out to God. He sought the light in a very dark place.
Then he did this. He continued on by saying:
Mark 14:35-42 (NIV)
35 Going a little farther, he fell to the ground and prayed that if possible the hour might pass from him. 36 “Abba,[a] Father,” he said, “everything is possible for you. Take this cup from me. Yet not what I will, but what you will.
For me in that moment Jesus opened the door for me to cry out in my flesh. As I stand in my place and look at this towering monster, I know I can say to God…Take it. I am done. Take Katie Grace. Take the work. Take the unknown. Just take it all. And then in my very next breath I can say…just kidding. Not my fleshly desires…not my fear in the face of pain but instead the goodness of you. I choose the goodness of you. That doesn’t mean my pain goes away. The monster won’t stop being there. He will still be towering over me, throwing sadness and despair my way. I just wont be standing there alone and unarmed. What I will be standing with is the testimony of Jesus victory. The victory of :
New International Version
Jesus said, “Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing.”
I can look at the pain and say…I choose the goodness of God. I choose the journey with my daughter. I choose her life. I forgive this world for what I was handed. I hold no aught or bitterness. I see you pain and I forgive. I chose the path of Jesus, which is to enter Gethsemane and conquer the pain. So that when I stand and look at everyday, I declare the testimony of forgivness, of life, of joy.
That is essentially what Jesus did. He said this cup is awful. Horrible. Painful. This monster looks ginormous and intimidating. Take this from me Father. Then He said…just kidding I choose the goodness of who you are. I choose the goodness of what You are doing in this world. I choose you and the goodness of your ways. I forgive the world for what I was handed. I hold no ill will or aught. I will bring a testimony of conquering, forgiveness, love, life and joy.
So I am here in my place. My Gethsemane. As the revelation takes a hold of my heart, the streak of light will become more. The joy will begin to cut down the enormous monster. His towering over me will no longer exist, for I will have conquered him and he will be placed where all pain overcome is placed. In the book of testimony’s declaring the goodness of the Lord and who He is.
We all have a Gethsemane. We all have places where we run to our vices to cut down the towering monster of pain. Where it seems like our cry that are tears filled with blood go unanswered. They aren’t though. The answer isn’t in the darkness or about switching on a light. It is about staring at the pain and reaching for the path that leads us to conquering and walking it.
Jesus walked it.
So must we.