One of the heaviest moments on my trip to Israel was reflecting in the Garden of Gethsemane where Jesus prayed.
We read from Luke and my eyes were fixed on the black and red words written in my Bible.
And He withdrew from them about a stone’s throw, and He knelt down and began to pray, saying, “Father, if You are willing, remove this cup from Me; yet not My will, but Yours be done.” Now an angel from heaven appeared to Him, strengthening Him. And being in agony He was praying very fervently; and His sweat became like drops of blood, falling down upon the ground.
I sat in the garden with my eyes closed, talking to the Father, in the same place where Jesus sweat drops of blood and wept over Jerusalem, as in Hebrews 5:7:
During the days of Jesus’ life on earth, he offered up prayers and petitions with fervent cries and tears to the one who could save him from death, and he was heard because of his reverent submission.
I wrote in my prayer journal:
Luke 22 -> At the garden of Gethsemane. Thank you Jesus – You took on my sin – You were fully God and fully human. Not my will but Your will be done, Father. You are sovereign – You are holy. You are worthy – You take away the sins of the world. You are the Passover Lamb, Jesus. In Gethsemane You were sorrowful and troubled. “My soul is overwhelmed with sorrow to the point of death. Stay here and keep watch with me.” (Matthew 26:38) “Going a little further he fell with his face to the ground and prayed, ‘My Father, if it is possible, may this cup be taken from me. Yet not as I will, but as you will.'” (v.39) Jesus says I am more than enough and I know you and love you more than you will ever know.
I kept repeating the last line, trying to take it all in – overwhelmed with the odd balance of grace and sorrow – and filled with gratitude.
It still blows my mind. The Son of God fully submitting to His Father, joyfully took on our sorrow, sin, and shame. Willfully. On His own. And all I can say is ‘thank you’.
BONUS: Hillsong Church Good Friday Service Message from Jerusalem: