Going a little farther, he fell to the ground and prayed that if possible the hour might pass from him. “Abba, Father,” he said, “everything is possible for you. Take this cup from me. Yet not what I will, but what you will.” – Mark 14:35-36
Jesus not only wept.
He was God incarnate
Yet he surrendered to His Father
No gentle request but a direct command
Take this cup.
One little word
Jesus uses it to submit his own desires
To show us what submission looks like
It isn’t to stop hoping for things to be
It isn’t to fail to ask him to change
We still ask for his favor
For the end to sorrow
I think back to Ruth
Would she have chosen to marry someone
Knowing he would die?
Leaving her penniless?
Following her mother in law
A stranger in a strange land
Gleaning wheat in the field
Of a kinsman-redeemer
A story no Hallmark movie could ever compare
How she found favor in his eyes
And bore Naomi a grandchild
Even becoming part of the line of Christ
If she had known the sorrow and loss that was coming
So much loss and so much uncertainty
Would she have offered that one word
Or Mary who might have dreamed of a lovely wedding
To a man she loved
Finding herself single and pregnant
Joseph prepared to divorce her
Stopped only by an angel
Judged by others for what they assumed was her sin
Having to endure the stares
The scornful looks
And a trip on a donkey to Bethlehem
Who would want to take a trip in their final month of pregnancy
On a donkey no less?
Having to give birth in a smelly barn
Having to flee the king’s jealous edict
Warned by only a dream?
And the women who wept
When the king’s soldiers came for their babies
Murdering them out of their very arms
So prophecy would be fulfilled
Jesus the savior child being born into a violent world
He had come to save
And how do I use this three-letter word?
In the waiting
In the not yet but hopefully soon
In the complaining
Yet more of what seems like it will never end
But rarely in the however
Yet not my will but His be done
And since Christianity is not moralism
An imitation, a call to be like Christ
We too are called to submit our wills
To the will of our Father
To offer him our Yet
As a fragrant offering
Stories would be boring if they were always predictable
And even though I sometimes enjoy a good Hallmark movie
Or an action film where the hero always wins
No matter the odds
The story He is writing is more complex than that
He is a better author
Will we let him write the ending of stories?
When the world is caving in?
When things are not going as expected?
When illness or a diagnosis comes out of the blue?
When a loved one is suffering?
When friends or even family members have turned their backs on us?
Will we trust Him in the middle of the story
The part where you really don’t know what will happen next
Completely caught off guard by a plot twist you never saw coming?
The book I want to write for my life would be full of sunshine
But it is the rain that brings growth
That makes the soil of my heart soft
I think my story would be far too small a thing
black and white
Oh the glorious tale He is weaving in the world
full of color
Lord grant me your favor this day
Not what I will
But what you will.