To anyone who may have been following through with the prayer series, I haven’t forgotten about it but what I have been typing up was really put to the test these past two weeks. With no intention of getting into the details, I hope it’ll be sufficient enough to say that the storm has not yet passed.
I think it’s imperative that I mention this because Part 6 of the prayer series discusses what we think is an unanswered prayer of Jesus. Just before the cross, Jesus prays, twice, “Let this cup pass from me …” speaking, of course, about the cup of pain He was meant to drink on behalf of us. Now, I’m in no way comparing my trivial situation to the agony that Christ went through, so please don’t misunderstand me. I’m simply stating this as a reminder that what I write on this blog is usually a reflection for myself on what I, myself, am going through.
Those who know me will be perfectly aware that I’m a closed book when it comes to sharing grief or sorrow. I bottle up pain and emotion. If anyone reading is nodding and thinking, “Yep, I’m the same”; let me advise you against it.
You smile and soldier on and people think that everything is, as the British say, “tickety-boo” but you know it isn’t so. It isn’t healthy to act as though there is no problem. Instead, rather than bear it alone, we ought to wholeheartedly trust the matter to the Lord, even if, and especially when, His deliverance does not bypass the storm.
As we’ll see in the next part in the prayer series, Jesus wasn’t praying to run away from the problem at hand. Instead, Jesus’ prayer was asking a question of, “is there no other way?” He wasn’t backing out. He wasn’t running away. Think, the world’s sins, past, present and future, were to be placed on Him. He, who knew no sin, was to become sin for us [2 Corinthians 5:21]. He, who was one with the Father was going to be separated from Him, turned away, forsaken. He, who was the Word from the beginning and from the beginning was with God and since the beginning was indeed God, was now going to be left alone, torn away from God.
The road to Calvary was a mere drop in that horrible, dark, agonising cup, and He was going to drink it, willingly. There was no other way.
As I was halfway through typing up Part 6, I felt disconnected because I was preoccupied with my own tiny storm. Naturally, God suggested that we go for a stroll through it. Right in the heart of it all, I found myself praying to God, “I am not asking You to take it away. All I’m asking is that You don’t leave me alone.”
It connected, finally. When you know God and are known by Him, the most terrifying reality that you could ever face is not a burden, as crushing as that may be to carry; it is not an illness or death, as horrible as that may be to face; it is not a loss, as heartbreaking as that is to endure. The most terrifying reality that you could ever face after knowing God and being known by Him is to be separated from Him. Thank God for Jesus who bore it so that we wouldn’t have to.