It’s a dark night in Gethsemane. While others sleep Jesus prays. No, wrestling would be a better word to use. Before the creation of the universe God the Son, the Second Person of the Trinity, volunteered to come to earth to pay for the sins of the world on the cross (Ephesians 1:4). Now is the time. In a few hours He will be separated from God the Father and God the Spirit. On Him will be dumped the shame and guilt for every sin every committed by mankind. Will He be able to endure such rejection and judgment? Will it be too much? As a man, Jesus shrank back from this commitment. He wrestled in prayer, but ultimately He prayed, “Nevertheless, Your will, not My will, be done” (Matthew 26:39-42; Mark 14:36; Luke 22:42). It wasn’t the first time He had faced this and committed Himself to God’s will no matter the cost (John 18:11; 6:38; 12:28).
No man was ever more committed to doing the will of God than Jesus going to the cross. But it wasn’t easy, for doing God’s will demanded a great price from Him. He was willing, but the price had to be faced. It was so difficult for Him to face what would happen and pray what He prayed that drops of blood literally came out of Him like sweat (Luke 22:44).
For us, too, there is a price to be paid for following God’s will. First and foremost, it means our will cannot be done. We usually want what is best and easiest for us, and we want it right away. Seldom is that God’s will. Then, too, following His will may cost friendships, popularity, finances or other things. We are thrilled by the stories of those who willing give their lives to follow God in missions or in countries where Christians are persecuted or killed. We may know some who have prayed “Your will be done” and as a result God led them down a difficult path that ultimately led to their growth and His glory, but which was far more difficult than anything they expected in life. That may be your testimony as well.
This is a hard commitment to make. Jesus Himself struggled with the enormity of it, but opted for God’s perfect long-term will over His short-termed, more convenient will. There was no other way for salvation to be provided. God’s was indeed the best, for Jesus and for all of us. His way for us is best, too.
Someone has said that there are no guarantees when we follow Jesus, when we let His will be done in our lives. That is not true. We aren’t guaranteed an easy road, but we are guaranteed He will be with us each step of the way, He will never leave or forsake us, He will not give us more than we can bear, His power and presence through it all, and that all things will ultimately be used for good (Romans 8:28). Those are great guarantees. Use them this day as you seek to do His will in all things.
(Written by Jerry Schmoyer, 2014. You can find more of his writings at http://www.christiantrainingonline.org/. If you have questions or suggestions feel free to contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org)