Gethsemane . . .

He walked away, about a stone’s throw, and knelt down and prayed, “Father, if You are willing, please take this cup of suffering away from Me. Yet I want Your Will to be done, not Mine.” Then an angel from Heaven appeared and strengthened Him. He prayed more fervently, and He was in such agony of spirit that His sweat fell to the ground like great drops of blood ~ Luke 22:41-44

In the Gospel of Mark, chapter 14, verse 34, Jesus says, “My soul is crushed with grief to the point of death.”

I have been meditating upon this for some time and I want to throw out to you a few thoughts.

Firstly, that Jesus while He was here on this earth was fully human and fully divine. In His humanity He experienced everything we do. Everything that afflicts our mortal bodies. The temptations in the wilderness, which He overcame with the Word of God. All the grief and loss and sickness that He saw around Him and was gracious enough to help and heal.

Secondly, in His humanity He would have experienced fear, and since He died for all our sicknesses and diseases and afflictions as well as our sins, fear would have been in that list.

So, in the garden, I believe He was experiencing such an horrendous fear of what was before Him, that His blood began to be shed at that point, even before His arrest. After all, that is why He came, to bear all our sins and sicknesses and all the rest of our afflictions. I think the fear was so great because He was about to take the whole world upon Himself that it became the world’s fears as well, and after His arrest and when He was tortured and mocked and scourged He was suffering all our illnesses and on the cross He bore our sins.

It’s very difficult for me to write what is in my head about this, because it so profoundly moves me.

Jesus’ whole life on this earth was our redemption. From the moment He got up and proclaimed:

“The Spirit of the Lord is upon Me, for He has anointed Me to bring Good News to the poor. He has sent Me to proclaim that captives will be released, that the blind will see, that the oppressed will be set free, and that the time of the Lord’s favour has come.” Isaiah 61:1-2

This statement covers it all ~ fears, illnesses, and sin. Jesus bore it all for us while we were yet sinners. He loved us to death. I don’t know whether it’s scientifically possible for someone to experience such grief and fear that they sweat drops of blood, but I am very certain that Jesus did, not only because that is what the Word tells us, but because that is who He was. Our redeemer, our saviour, our freedom fighter and our healer.

He overcame temptation in the wilderness, and lived to fight many more days here on earth to accomplish that which He was sent to do.

He overcame fear in the garden of Gethsemane and went to the cross anyway, and gained freedom for us from that fear.

He had to have experienced all of humanity to be able to free us from tyranny and know and understand all the struggles we have as human beings here on this earth.

He shed drops of blood as He prayed about His fear and therefore understands your fears today. Whatever they may be, sit down somewhere quiet and give them all over to the one who understands and cares for you. Because He’s been through it too.

Jesus Grass

Give all your worries and cares to God, for He cares about you ~ 1 Peter 5:7

 

 

 

God of the Weary . . .

When doubts filled my mind, Your comfort gave me renewed hope and cheer ~ Psalm 94:19

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Sale Botanical Gardens

There are times in my life when I feel so weary that everything is too much. I don’t mean to the point of despair, but just that  the everyday walk through life is just a drag. I’m not a social being, an out-there do as much as I can in one day person. Those people make me tired, and a little envious at times wishing that I could be more like them.

But I believe God makes each of us unique and moulds our lives as He has planned.

For many reasons throughout my life I have been a solitary person and I  believe that although that is probably not what God intended, He is using it to His advantage for His kingdom. He does want me to be part of a church and  socialise with other Christians, and I try very hard to do this, but it is a struggle for me. God’s purpose for my life does require a certain amount of solitary time.

Matthew 5:3 says “Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.”

Matthew Henry says of this verse : “Those who are ‘weary and  heavy-laden’, are the poor in spirit, and they shall find rest with Christ.”

My daily strength is in knowing that God walks with me and goes before me always. I get to know Him more and more each day through reading His Word, even if it is only one verse that has captured my interest and that may apply to where I’m at with life. I have spent a lot of time reading books written by outstanding men and women of God. They inform me and encourage me in my walk with Him. Although this year I am focused on reading not only my Bible, but some Joyce Meyer and a beautiful book on Proverbs by Marilyn Hickey that has gorgeous pictures to colour. Walking with Jesus has changed my life. I know I would not be here now if it was not for God’s intervention in my life.

Recently, through reading  one of these books, I learned something in regards to Matthew 11:28-30.

Come to Me, all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you. Let Me teach you, because I am humble and gentle at heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For My yoke is easy to bear, and the burden I give you is light.

When oxen worked they were usually doubly yoked. A strong or lead ox would take the larger side and the younger, weaker ox  the opposite side. As they worked, the weaker ox would plough or track with the stronger ox, which bore the main part of the load.

When we are yoked with Christ, the burden is light because He is pulling the weight and making the way as the strong one. How beautiful is that!

 

Stop Blaming God . . .

Aug 2017

We need to stop blaming God for everything wrong that happens in our lives.

Some of us go from bad to worse all the time never taking any responsibility for our own decisions in life. We pray and then moan to God when our prayers are not answered the way we want or as quickly as we want. We need to remember Jesus’ prayer in the garden of Gethsemane, “Not My will Father, but Your will be done.” (Matthew 26:39/Mark 14:36/Luke 22:42)

For some time I have been trying to find the right time of day to set aside for prayer. Nothing seemed to be working. Many nights as I get older I am awake for as much as 2 hours trying to go back to sleep. Sometimes I ask God who I can pray for, but all I want to do is go back to sleep. A few weeks ago I was awake for 2 hours three nights in a row. Now that was too much, because I don’t function on less than 7 hours sleep. I was annoyed that my prayers for some sleep were not seemingly being heard. By the third morning I finally was so cheesed off at 5.50 am that I decided to get up and sit in the lounge room and pray. I had a shower and I realized that God had finally answered my prayer. So for the next four days I did just that. I deliberately got up at about 6.30 am to pray. And I enjoyed it! It has literally taken me years to get to this point, because I’m not an early morning person. However, as I said, that was several weeks ago and I have lapsed! So, I am still a work in progress.

My point is, that without  my uncomfortable sleepless nights, God would not have claimed my attention. I am thankful for this and hope and pray and am working for the discipline to continue especially on those really cold wintry mornings. I may need to keep the heater on low overnight!

So, my original statement got a bit lost here.

Stop blaming God for everything!!!

He created you for His pleasure. He loves you.

When Adam and Eve sinned in the Garden of Eden, God saw immediately what needed to be done to save His ultimate creation, mankind, from eternal death. You see, rejecting God is sin and is punishable by death.

God gave everything for us to be saved. His one and only Son, Jesus, the Christ.

When sin entered the world through Adam and Eve’s rebellion it brought with it sickness, poverty, mental illness, hatred, unbelievable evil, destruction and death. When Jesus was nailed to that cross, God transferred all of that sin and everything it entails, from us (every person who had ever been born or was ever to be born) to Jesus. That is why He cried out, “My God, My God, why have You forsaken Me?” (Matthew 27:45,46/Mark 15:33,34) Because God cannot look upon sin He had to turn His face away from His Son in those moments.

God has done His part, and Jesus has born our sin.

Our part is to accept that sacrifice. Yes, there is inconceivable evil in the world, and horrible diseases, and we have lost loved ones to these things. But please don’t blame God. He is not responsible. The enemy that tempted Adam and Eve is the culprit, but through Jesus’ sacrifice we can beat him at his evil game.

We have the Word of God to encourage us, the testimonies of the Acts of the Apostles to embolden us, and if we know the Lord, His Holy Spirit to give us power and love and a sound and disciplined mind in all our decision making.

Please, don’t blame God for the things that go wrong in your life. Maybe the wrong decision was made, maybe a lot of things. I’ve heard amazing testimonies to the greatness of God come out of amazingly tragic losses.

God is not against us, He is for us.
And if God is for us, who can be against us? !!! Romans 8:31

If you don’t know Jesus as your Saviour, you may like to pray the Prayer of Salvation. The link is at the top of this page.