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Lent Day 35

March 30, 2015

Holy Week has begun. This final week of Jesus’ life some 2,000 years ago. The solemnity of Lent deepens as we move toward Maundy Thursday and Good Friday.

It’s hard to fathom, isn’t it? That our loving God and Father would bring His Son to us only for him to die for us. It’s the opposite of what most human parents would do. We would give our own lives before we’d give up our children’s lives if we had the choice.

I wonder if that was a hard decision for God. Of course I can think only in human terms whereas God has a much grander vision. Still, for even a moment did He want to stop this course of action?

We know that Jesus, in his humanness, wanted to stop it at one point. “Remove this cup from me,” he pleads. Then, according to Mark, immediately returns to doing what God wants, not what Jesus wants.

Mark 14: 32-42 (NRSV): Jesus Prays in Gethsemane

32 They went to a place called Gethsemane; and he said to his disciples, “Sit here while I pray.” 33 He took with him Peter and James and John, and began to be distressed and agitated. 34 And he said to them, “I am deeply grieved, even to death; remain here, and keep awake.” 35 And going a little farther, he threw himself on the ground and prayed that, if it were possible, the hour might pass from him. 36 He said, “Abba, Father, for you all things are possible; remove this cup from me; yet, not what I want, but what you want.” 37 He came and found them sleeping; and he said to Peter, “Simon, are you asleep? Could you not keep awake one hour? 38 Keep awake and pray that you may not come into the time of trial; the spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak.” 39 And again he went away and prayed, saying the same words. 40 And once more he came and found them sleeping, for their eyes were very heavy; and they did not know what to say to him. 41 He came a third time and said to them, “Are you still sleeping and taking your rest? Enough! The hour has come; the Son of Man is betrayed into the hands of sinners. 42 Get up, let us be going. See, my betrayer is at hand.”

If only my faith was always so strong. It is not. I say I want to do God’s will when in reality I want God to want (and provide) what it is I want. Thankfully, He knows better and does not listen to me. Our Almighty Father loves us all and protects us every minute of our lives.

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