Getting it Right in Gethsemane

Our pastor did an AWESOME job on the sermon on Sunday.  ((Did I mention that already?))  We were studying Mark 14: 32-36… here it is, to refresh your memories:

And they came to a place which was named Gethsemane: and He saith to his disciples, Sit ye here, while I shall pray.  And He taketh with him Peter and James and John, and began to be sore amazed, and to be very heavy;  And saith unto them, My soul is exceeding sorrowful unto death: tarry ye here, and watch. And He went forward a little, and fell on the ground, and prayed that, if it were possible, the hour might pass from Him. And He said, Abba, Father, all things are possible unto Thee; take away this cup from Me: nevertheless not what I will, but what Thou wilt.

Pastor said this was an incredible illustration of a human being completely overwhelmed.  He said that Jesus Christ had known all along what was going to happen, but when faced with the enormity of it, it nearly undid Him… Jesus Himself said it made Him ‘exceeding sorrowful unto death’.  How many of us have been there?  Or at least felt like it?

The difference is that He wasn’t just man, but God and man at the same time, so His response to this would be something definitely worth emulating.  Because as people, we don’t always handle things the way we should.  I know I don’t, that’s for damn sure.  ((grins ruefully))  But Jesus (being God) couldn’t handle it wrong!

1 – He saith to His disciples…  Confession to comrades.  Pastor said the first thing Jesus did was admit openly and honestly that He was having a struggle.  This is something I get hung up on (and it figures it’s step one).  Because I don’t like admitting to people when I’m unnerved, unraveled, undone, and upset.  I like the Trinity personae – kick ass and unaffected.  Admitting to people that there’s a problem and that you’re not handling it well sucks.  But how could people pray for you if you don’t?  How can you be a part of others if there are walls in the way, right?  Oi… toughie for me.  ((blush!))  But Jesus took His friends, admitted the truth, and went to His place of prayer with them.

2 – And He went forward a little…  Getting with God.  Jesus brough His disciples with Him, but when it came to dealing with the trouble, He went further alone… but not.  Because He was with God, and that was where He needed to end up.  How often do we cross our arms and think, “fine, I don’t need anyone, I’m better off alone!”  And we forget that we *aren’t* alone… and that where we’re reeeeeally better off is with Him.

3 – All things are possible unto Thee… The Hope of Help.  Jesus didn’t say “I don’t know what to do, I don’t know how to handle this…” He simply committed it to His Father.  Where we can’t, He can.  Better yet – where we can’t… He will.  Isn’t that awesome?!!  It was never a wavering in His faith, it was an admission that He was in need of that Hope of Help that He knew was available.  wOw!   Know what I mean?  Just think about that for a moment, and you’re draw will drop.  ((Mine did, anyhow))  It’s amazing.

4 – Nevertheless not what I will, but what Thou willThe Resolve to what’s Right.  Jesus knew what the right thing to do was.  He knew what God’s will was for Him.  And while His human side was completely overwhelmed, His spiritual side was aimed at the course set for Him.   And He was obedient to that.

Now, Anna, you say, what if we don’t know what God’s will is for us?  My reply is, long term or short term?  We don’t necessarily know where we’re supposed to go, what job we’ll end up in, how we’ll get out of the financial mess we managed, where we should move, or a hundred other things, but we do know that we are to stand firm in the Faith, to trust God, to obey His commands, and to follow Christ.  I say if you fix your sights on that much, you’ll be pointed in the right direction.  And what’s over that next hill will come naturally.  Maybe that’s a bit simplistic, but I’m a blonde housewife in the middle of Nowhere, Michigan.  Simplistic works for me.  ((winK!))

A week ago I had some trouble on this site.  I recieved – out of the blue and totally unexpectedly – a terrible comment.  It floored me, because I thought that person was my friend, and because I’d trusted her.  And I don’t trust many people… so this is a BIG THING for me… please understand.  And it wasn’t done privately (Matt 18), it was done ON MY SITE plain for all to see.  Ouwwwwwch. 

And my first reaction was pure gut – I retaliated.  Not at the person, striking at her character and very heart as she did me, but at her statements (which, in the end was taken the same way, but that’s not something I can control).  I have a mouth, and you know it’s true.  And I don’t like taking shit, and you know that’s true, too.  Hey, let’s be honest, eh?

My second reaction (and please remember that this was BEFORE the Sunday Sermon) was to write it out.  Admit that I was hurt to my friends.  (Not the whole world, so don’t be offended.  Just those I trusted… or at least HOPED I could trust, at that point.)  Then I got alone with God about it.  So steps one and two of the Gethsemane Guidelines… well, it wasn’t intentional, but I did them.  (((kinda kewl!)))

But I goofed from there on in.  I didn’t commit the situation to Him.  I didn’t.  I went to her site to read the mudslinging.  ((Ouch, will someone PLEASE remind me never to do that again?!?))… on the other hand, I discovered three others involved with the gossip, anger, malice, and so forth.  ((sigh!))  Handy to know thy enemy, eh?  Bummer it had to be that way, though.

I shouldn’t have gone there.  I should have committed their behavior and my own trouble with it to Him, and let it go.  I realized that the moment pastor got to number three on Sunday.  Well, on the bright side, talk about a sermon custom-made for a freak like me, eh?  ((grins)) On the brighter side, where I go from here is up to me.  And where I can’t, He will.  Isn’t that incredible!!?!

A friend of mine called me on my retaliation this morning.  My gut reaction?  Shut up, do you have ANY idea what they’re saying about me?  How could I NOT say something back, hello!   My reaction after that?  Crap.  Screwed that up again, Lord.  Two deep breaths, and thank you for sending him to call me on my behavior.  Because even now my behavior needs correcting.  Will I *ever* get it right?!   And the response?  Where you can’t, I will.

But that brings us to number four.  I know what’s right.  It sucks, and it’d be easier to just let it go, but I need to do what’s right.  Because they did to me publicly, and I retaliated publicly, and I purged semi-publicly, and I’m acknowledging God’s control of it publicly… I need to get right publicly, too.

Momma, Pa5t0rd, Lucky13, Mrs.TW, and Jay… I forgive you.  Whether you accept that or not, it’s your choice.  But what you did has been put in the Father’s hands, and that’s where it’s going to stay.

I’ll leave this open for comment, (mainly because if I don’t, my e-mail and guestbook will be swamped)  but I’d prefer the comments to be directed at the Sermon lesson and it’s applications, not to my situation.  Also, please don’t link or mention to them that I’ve done this.  If they want to know, they’ll see it.  If God wants them to know, they’ll see it.  No meddling human involvement, k?  Thanks so much for understanding.

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  1. Thank you so much for sharing this sermon with us. It seems like your pastor has listened to what you said, but that was a take on this passage that I hadn’t heard.

  2. Anonymous

     /  February 7, 2005

    That’s just awesome that you’ve had the priviledge of two good sermons.    To bad it doesn’t happen every sermon, but hey 2 in a row rocks!! 

  3. Amen and , Anna.

  4. Excellent reading about Gethsemane.

  5. That sounded like an excellent sermon.  Those 4 points are all well worth commiting to memory!    How often do we fret or think we can do it alone when really that’s when we need God most.  I know I certainly can use this sermon today! 

  6. Anna, you know that I don’t agree with you all the time, but all I have to say is HERE HERE! This was great. I wholeheartedly agree with this sermon and your words afterwards. It is this kind of thing that keeps me coming back to your site. It excites me to the point of having to read the scriptures right away.

  7. Thank you for posting this. I am proud of you, dear sister.

  8. Too bad this wasn’t the first of your writings I read. Christ was both humble and righteous. Powerful example. Powerful testimony from personal experience. God has wonderful timing, doesn’t He?

  9. Well done!

  10. It’s amazing how well God knows what we need and when we need it. I’ve seen it happen so many times – in church, the Sunday School lesson and message in church have BOTH hit exactly where I’ve needed it, and on several occasions. It just shows once again (since we need to be reminded so often) of His faithfulness.

  11. Something that occurred to me while reading this was that Jesus would prefer we seek nor our reputation, but Him. In fact, going all out, seems to often mean the loss of our good reputation. Something to think about.
    Im your friend Anna, in a distant way, and I learn alot from you. Thanks. 🙂


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