Summary: Keeping our eyes on Jesus brings peace.
LET US GO FROM BEING FULL OF APPREHENSION TO BEING FILLED WITH PEACEFULNESS
Can you imagine in your mind the face of Jesus? When he was around children you see a smile on his face. When he found that his friend had died the Bible says that there were tears in his eyes. When Jesus was awakened from sleep in a boat in which the disciples thought they were going to perish he had a look of sternness as he called to the wind and waves to be still. When he taught the truths that he had from the Father he had an honest look on his face. When he was asked questions to try and trip him up you see a face of being disturbed. In our Scripture we find that he had a look of pain. He had not had this look before. There are some who have seen a picture of Jesus in the garden of Gethsemane with his face with a soft look, his hands folded and kneeling besides a rock praying. Jesus it seems is in a very peaceful time in his life. Let us turn to what the picture is in the gospels to see if this is what is what is really right? MT 26:37, "he began to be sorrowful and troubled. 38Then he said to them, "My soul is overwhelmed with sorrow to the point of death.
MK 14:. 44And being in anguish, he prayed more earnestly, and his sweat was like drops of blood falling to the ground.
LK22:"35Going a little farther, he fell to the ground and prayed that if possible the hour might pass from him.
So how would see this scene? Jesus is not in peace in a kneeling position, he is flat on the ground. His face is in the dirt. His hands would be stretched out perhaps holding onto the grass. He is making sobs that cause his body to rise up and down with each sob.
What do we do with this scene? Perhaps this is a good passage to turn to when you are feeling fearful or afraid? Would you not agree that fear is one of the hardest emotions if not the hardest that we face in this life? Jesus is seeing something so threatening that he was not just asking he was pleading for God to make a change in plans. “Take this cup away from me.”
Now let us ask what would make you make such a request? Facing a crowd? Having to speak in public? Driving on a highway? Knowing you are going to have to have surgery? Growing old? Having to take medicine to make you well that tastes awful? Whatever your fear is may seem small to others but to you your heart starts racing, you feel weak and your body seems cold. Here was Jesus facing a fear that made him not just sweat but it says his sweat turned to blood. They call this condition Hematidrosis. He was so full of anxiety that his sweat became as blood. He was more than anxious he was afraid. Worry that is turned into fear can do strange things to our physical bodies. One has said that if worry is a burlap sack then fear is a concrete block. It does not budge and keeps us from enjoying life.
Jesus faces fear here and it is amazing that he shares this with us in the Word. How different it is for us because we try to cover up our fears. If we have sweaty hands we put them in our pockets for no one to see. If we feel knots in our stomach we tell no one. Some hide their fears by talking more than they need to. Others will just stay away from being seen by anyone. Jesus did not hide that he had fear. He did not try to mask it over with a fake smile like some do, but he did ask God for strength. That he was full of fear was first heard by His heavenly Father. He did not go to his mother. He did not seek his disciples. He did not call on others to come and pray with him. His first appeal went to his Father.
Many have their escapes from fears. Some seek it at a bar where they can drown their fear with a numbing drink but their fear is only put on hold. Some go to a counselor but find that they are only human and can only give earthly solutions. Some will read a self-help book but find what has helped others does not drive the fear out of their lives. Some may even try a best friend to help solve their fear but find their friend might have the same fear or a worse one so no help is found. Here Jesus who is our example went first to his Father and faced his fear under his counsel.