Neither one of us knows how we met, but it was through some form of social media. And what a tremendous blessing Sarah has been to me! She is outspoken (in a good way), encouraging and not afraid to take a stand for what she believes. She has prayed for me and I have prayed for her and the Lord has used the different trials we both are facing to weave a common thread of friendship and understanding. What a treasure it is to be uplifted spiritually by someone you’ve never met, but that God knew you needed in your life. Thank you, Sarah, for this post. I know it was hard to write and even harder to live through, but I know it will be a help!
That moment is one I’ll probably relive many times throughout the rest of my life. The silence was deafening as the ultrasound tech frantically searched for any sign that our baby was still alive.
That was one of those moments when I really questioned where in the world God was. What kind of purpose could this EVER serve.
The next month was a rollercoaster of doctor’s visits, silent ultrasounds, and a trip to the ER for emergency surgery and I almost went to meet Jesus.
It seemed as though, at every moment, the Lord would gently whisper these song lyrics in my heart, “If it has to be Gethsemane, I want the world to know, that I love you and I worship you for you.”
Why did it have to be Gethsemane? Why couldn’t the Lord let this cup pass from us? I’ve asked why MANY times, and the Lord has always replied with, “Jesus asked to be delivered in Gethsemane too, aren’t you glad I didn’t? Aren’t you STILL reaping the rewards of the original Gethsemane? One day, you’ll be grateful that I didn’t take away your Gethsemane, too.”
You never walk through a dark, lonely Gethsemane without the Lord having great plans in store. Jesus experienced sweet communion with the Father in Gethsemane, and I have experienced the same. I don’t know what all he has in store for me or who he plans to impact with this Gethsemane, but I know sweet things come from dark places and he NEVER moves without others in mind.
When you’re facing a Gethsemane in your life, you get to choose how it is used. It can either draw you nearer to the Lord, or it can drive a wedge between you.
Jesus set the perfect example of dealing with dark times. Even though the disciples didn’t understand the burden that Jesus was under, they stayed close, JESUS DID NOT ISOLATE HIMSELF. Isolation never breeds spirituality.
You don’t have to include everyone in your burdened times, but having someone you can trust to “watch and pray” with you, is so important, even if they don’t fully understand the depth of your sorrow, the right people will always be willing to be there.
“And he took with him Peter and the two sons of Zebedee, and began to be sorrowful and very heavy.
Then saith he unto them, My soul is exceeding sorrowful, even unto death: tarry ye here, and watch with me.”
Do not neglect your spiritual life. When you’re in a Gethsemane experience, your first reaction is often to slack in reading and prayer. But that will serve no purpose other than to weaken you. Pour out your heart before the Lord, it’s okay to tell him you don’t understand. Gethsemane isn’t punishment, it’s a drawing of you to the Lord. Prayer is how you’re going to make it, this is how you see Gethsemane through, because I promise you that there is nothing IN YOU, that is strong enough.
“And he was withdrawn from them about a stone’s cast, and kneeled down, and prayed”
Jesus denied his will, what he wanted, to make sure that the will of God reigned supreme. Gethsemane often involves a lot of getting your flesh out of the way, and a lot of submitting to the will of a God who can do no wrong. In any kind of Gethsemane experience, where you are so sorrowful, even unto to death, the enemy will attack your confidence in the Lord’s goodness. You cannot get bitter against God until you believe he has done you wrong. Emotions are going to try to control you in Gethsemane, but feelings are not facts, trust the one who has never made a wrong move. Let his will reign.
“Saying, Father, if thou be willing, remove this cup from me: nevertheless not my will, but thine, be done.”
You will experience the Lord in ways you NEVER would, had you not been through Gethsemane. Your walk deepens. You learn to love his character more deeply. Most of us never experience the Lord deeply because we refuse to respond biblically when confronted with a Gethsemane. We experience all the sorrow, but we don’t experience the Lord. The only limit to what God can do is YOU. We’re all going to walk through dark days, but I get to choose how I respond to them. The Lord wants to draw you in deeper through this, he wants to dwell in your darkness with you, but you are the only one who can invite him in.
“And there appeared an angel unto him from heaven, strengthening him.”
Gethsemane is dark, it’s heavy, it’s sorrowful. Some will not understand your sorrow.
You will be tempted to give up.
But if you choose to love and worship the Lord for who He is, if you choose to fellowship with him in dark places, he will work your Gethsemane for good. He will allow you to reap the benefits of Gethsemane, he will allow your arm of ministry to deepen in ways it never would have had you not responded correctly.
YOU get to choose if your Gethsemane is usable. Not everything that happens is good, but the Lord can take everything that happens and work it for good.
I’m still praying for the Lord to give us more children, I still question sometimes why the Lord didn’t let this cup pass from me. But I can tell you that there has never been a moment where he has not been worthy of my worship, where he has not been faithful. I am nothing, he is everything, and he longs to be EVERYTHING to you.
“The Lord is righteous in all his ways,
and holy in all his works.”
(Here is the song Sarah referenced in her post: https://youtu.be/O2NNowpQSvM)
I am the oldest of seven children so big, homeschooling families are my favorite! I was saved when I was 15, and I’ve spent most of my life working youth camps. It truly is my heart and I will always believe that serving in youth camp is truly living the dream. I got married at 22 to a tender hearted farmer. We have one, fiery, red headed little girl named Elli Mae. And we have 3 babies in heaven. We pray daily for the Lord to grow our family so we can raise up another generation for him. I love working with my husband on our farm, building my photography business, and teaching Elli Mae’s consistently inquiring mind. I’m so thankful for the opportunity to serve the Lord in any capacity, because he is truly all that matters.