I hope you had a lovely Easter? I had an amazing time with family. It’s a shame how quickly the holiday flew by. All through this Easter period, there’s been two things that i have been meditating on. The first is Gethsemane and the second i will be sharing on my next post.
Gethsemane was the garden where Jesus often went to pray (Matthew 26:36). It was also the place where He was betrayed by Judas Iscariot (Matthew 18).
I have been thinking about the link between the two important activities that took place in Gethsemane. Prayer and betrayal. We often times don’t expect betrayal from the same soil that is supposed to nourish us. And when it happens, the shock we get can be very shattering to the point where sadly some believers are unable to bounce back.
If we believe that Jesus Christ is God, and that God is all knowing, then we all will agree that Jesus Christ knew very well that He was going to be betrayed in Gethsemane. Now i’m not going to act as though i knew why both events happened in the same place because the bible doesn’t say. However i do believe that there is a lesson that we can learn from it.
The place of prayer is a place of preparation. Prayer fuels and energizes us for what is to come. I remember when the movie ‘war room’ was released how believers were all hyped. It was indeed a great movie centered around the power of prayer. It was great because there was a charge in the atmosphere among believers with many creating corners in there homes where they will be spending intimate time with God.
The place where Jesus was supposed to be refreshed as He fellowship with His Father in prayer, became the ground where He was betrayed by a member of His circle. Despite this, the benefits of Gethsemane outweighed the bitterness of it because the grace that was released during prayer helped Jesus Christ to carry the weight of the cross and to complete His mission here on earth.
Sometimes we will experience pain, rejection and betrayal from the same place that is met to nourish us. These experiences do leave a bitter taste in our mouths. However when we look deep enough, we will be able to see the blessings we have also enjoyed in those seasons and appreciate the growth that has come with them.
Jesus Christ persevered in prayer. As a result, He was able to face His betrayal. The prayer we pray in our ‘Gethsemane’ goes up and gathers as a cloud which rains down strength and grace when we face trials and temptations. There is a link between how we persevere in prayer and how we persevere through trials and temptations. Just as Jesus’ prayer didn’t prevent the betrayal from happening, so also we won’t be able to pray everything away. However those prayers certainly come handy when we are going through tough times. Prayer prepares us for what is to come.
Gethsemane ‘cooks’ us until we are done enough to handle the agony of betrayals. It humbles us until our hearts are desensitized to sin and flesh. Until our lips mutters ‘not my will but yours be done’. Until we start exhibiting love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. Until we get to that place where we no longer seek revenge but we allow God fight for us. Until our hearts begin to break for what breaks His. Gethsemane is a place of preparation.
Do you have your Gethsemane; a place where you go into to pray? This isn’t about having a particular place; although that is amazing. It’s more about having a time to pray. A time when we can press into God’s presence without distractions. Gethsemane doesn’t come to us. We go there. Jesus went there. He was proactive. Some of us are waiting to have enough time so we can spend time with God. That time will never come. Be proactive. Create time. Go into your Gethsemane because the prayers and preparations of today are what will carry you tomorrow.