Tanya Marlow invites us to travel with Jesus to
THERE ARE TIMES WHEN LIFE FEELS TOO MUCH TO BEAR. Sometimes we
have sorrow upon sorrow, and we feel crushed from the weight of the
struggle. We fall to our knees, sobbing. At these points, it is
tempting to feel alone. However, our God is familiar with pain and
desperation. The day before Jesus' death, when he knew all that lay
before him, he went to a garden and wrestled with God.
My soul is overwhelmed
Meet Jesus in that place of tears. Travel with him to the garden
of Gethsemane where he struggled with knowing he would suffer. See
him collapsing onto the ground, sweating blood with the agony of
the thought of the future pain. Admit, as he did, "my soul is
overwhelmed with sorrow to the point of death" (Mark 14:34, NIVUK).
We have a God who knows our deepest agony, knows it to the
Lord, I have come to the end of myself. The pain is too
much. Lord, be with me. Jesus, be near me.
Take this cup from me
Hear the feverish murmured prayers pouring from Jesus' lips,
over and over again. Take this cup from me, he pleads. Even Jesus,
God's own Son, who had planned with God his incarnation and death,
is desperate to escape pain and suffering. We know we can plead
with God for miracles and salvation because Jesus did so, too. We
have a God who can do anything. Even when the situation looks
hopeless, it is right to ask for miracles, praying prayers of
desperation for God to change the future.
Abba, you can do the impossible. Please take this pain away.
Please rescue me. Lord, save me. Jesus, hear me.
Yet not what I will
When we face a hopeless situation, either in our lives or
others', there comes a point when those desperate prayers fade.
It's not that we ever desire suffering, it's not our will, just as
it was not Jesus' will. But eventually, we surrender our situation
into the hands of a loving God. See Jesus' courage in praying, "Yet
not what I will, but what you will." Though we may not understand
it, though we are still desperately sad, we tearfully entrust the
future to God. Though we may never fully know it this side of
heaven, there is always redemption, always a purpose. Suffering
does not have the final word.
Lord, I don't understand. But I submit my life to you and
place my future in your hands. Lord, redeem my suffering. Jesus,
make things clear to me.
In the garden of tears, we are never alone. We look to Jesus:
the man of sorrows, acquainted with grief. The garden of
Tanya Marlow is author of Those Who Wait: Finding God
in Disappointment, Doubt and Delay (Malcolm Down
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