Reading Time: 5 minutes
“And there appeared an angel unto Him from heaven, strengthening Him.” (Luke 22:39-46)
We live in a world of constant turmoil and trials. But, it has been my personal experience that God will give us the strength we need; and He will look after all those things that we are unable to do ourselves. I wrote this poem a few years back while reflecting on how best to manage a very difficult time in my life. And I think I have used it in an article for this web site last year. But this Sabbath, I would like to present this poem again, in a slightly different light and context. I have re-worded it to suit the subject matter for this devotional.
I have had a number of people ask me lately how to cope with the times we are living in today. There is so much propaganda in the so-called “news” of today that many are sincerely struggling to decipher what is truth. World events seem to be closing us in tighter and more aggressively than ever before. The only place I have managed to find truth that I can count on for all situations is in God’s Word, the Bible. The examples of Jesus and how He has lived His Incarnate Life here on planet Earth will help anyone to cope with anything.
One of my friends at Church told me a short while ago how that when they pray; they do it “as if Jesus was right beside me when I pray.” And we got talking about the subject again earlier today, and came up with the related idea that it might be one step better, to also act as if Jesus was standing right there beside us, when we encounter difficult people anywhere. Or, during the very worst trials of our life, how do things change for us when we act as if Jesus was/is right there beside us as we respond to what is happening?
We all have many little remnants or fragments of experiences that we sort of just tuck under the rug because we find them to be embarrassing, or shocking, and many times, we have no idea what to do with such things in our life. But we can learn from one of the parables that Jesus talked about, and we can respond to world or personal events, with the “everlasting gospel, and it’s everlasting principles. According to the everlasting gospel of Rev 14, there is hope among the fragments. If your heart has been broken by grief, by worry, by fear, or by anything else; just make art with the pieces. Gather up every one of those fragments and bring them to Jesus. Jesus will use those fragments to further your testimony of “Christ in you the hope of glory.” and that is “the everlasting gospel.”
We are all born by the anguish we bear, and when we are friends with Jesus; He turns that into the love we want to give. And the only reason we can give such love, is because we ourselves have received the same love from Him. As part of the “everlasting gospel, Jesus is calling His Church today, to “gather up the fragments that remain, that NOTHING be lost.” (John 6:12). Jesus doesn’t want anyone you know to be “lost,” and we need to smarten up when we deal with people we do not like or whom we disagree with. Bring THOSE fragments to Jesus!
Can you imagine what would happen if we all acted like Jesus was standing right beside us when we respond to someone who is treating us like dirt, as if Jesus was standing right there beside us? What would be different in our experience, when we are broken, weak, or alone, if we simply recognized that Jesus was right there beside us when we responded to our personal trials and heart aches?
One of the most important things I think that Jesus has taught me is to simply pray. Prayer is what the enclosed poem is about; and I wrote it to both reflect what I thought Jesus was doing in The garden, and what I think Jesus wants me to do in the Garden.
Our great need is itself an argument and pleads most eloquently in our behalf. But the Lord is to be sought unto to do these things for us. He says, “Ask, and it shall be given you.” And “He that spared not His own Son, but delivered Him up for us all, how shall He not with Him also freely give us all things?” Matthew 7:7; Romans 8:32. SC.095.002 In John 14:27, Jesus promises “My peace I leave with you. Not like the world gives, give I unto you.” It means that even thought Jesus outwardly had one of the most troubled lives ever lived, inwardly He had a deep abiding calm and peace. The Weymouth translation says “”My own peace give I unto you.” Jesus wants to give us what He has got. PTL
In all your conflicts, in all the trials and perplexities of life, seek counsel from God. The path of obedience to God is as a shining light that shineth more and more unto the perfect day. Follow step after step in the path of duty, as it is revealed to you. Like my friend’s Mother always used to say: “just keep doing what you know is right.” Steep places may have to be climbed, but go forward in the path of humility, of faith and self-denial, leaving the clouds of doubt behind you. Sorrow not in a hopeless way, for the living need your care and love. You have enlisted in the Lord’s army; be brave soldiers of Jesus Christ. Let words of penitence and grateful praise come up before God as sweet incense in His heavenly sanctuary. Three men Were walking on a wall, Feeling, Faith, and Fact, When Feeling had an awful fall, and Faith was taken back, Fact remained, and brought Faith back, and Faith brought Feeling too.
Jesus was treated as we deserve, that we might be treated as He deserves. Let us learn from our Lord during His time of trouble, and in His experience in The Garden alone:
The Garden Alone
Based on Luke 22:39-46
God was with Him in the Garden alone
Jesus conquered by strength divine
But the separation went deeper than bone
As the battle began; God drew the line.
The Father didn’t want to remove the cup
The disciples slept from sorrow and fear
And while Gabriel came to lift Jesus up
His sweat poured out as blood and tear.
As crises supreme did heart and soul break
Jesus came alone, to fight by petition there
The angel assured Him He made no mistake
For now He might answer the sinners prayer.
We have to go to the Garden alone
We have to bring our worry and care
And when we go, we glimpse the throne
For in the Garden; our Lord is there.
Jesus conquered by strength not his own
And we can have this encounter today
As we go by faith to our garden alone
To walk with Him the blood-stained way.
(all rights reserved world wide, freely distribute except for profit, by David T Battler)
“Christ conquered in divine strength, and so must every tempted soul overcome. God was with Christ in the Garden of Gesthemane; and by this experience of Christ, we are to learn to trust our heavenly Father; at all times, and in all places, , we are to believe that he is tender, true, and faithful – able to keep that which is committed to His care. In the agonizing struggle of Christ, our Substitute and Surety; the Father was beside His Son, and He is beside every soul that struggles with discouragement and difficulty.”