Now, with no further delay, let's get in to the message. I would like to give unceasing praise to The Father for this blog. Aside from prayer, it is the one place I can lay bare my truest self. Though being a writer was never an aspiration, I recognize why He has gifted me with this ability. It is my sincere prayer these weekly posts edify and water each of you. Honestly, I must admit they are my solace. I look forward to them, and they help ME to remain obedient
Of course it is Good Friday, and as it should it draws us to remember the sacrifice offered for us by Our Lord and Savior Jesus The Christ. Today we are going to talk about sacrifice, prosecution, alienation, and tribulation. Rather than approaching it from a third person point of view though, we're going to make this personal. In fact, how about I just share what's going on with me. Sound good? I have no qualms with showing my vulnerability, my concerns, my humanity. For as long as I can remember the passages of Jesus' time in the Garden of Gethsemane was a great "story". No other passage so vividly details the depths of His love for each of us. It's not the cross, it's the resignation to accept that He had to get on it that was the test. My favorite text concerning this aspect of His life is found in Luke 22:39-46.
I'm far from perfect. In fact I just may be the most imperfect person to ever draw breath. I'm far from a saint. I may have invented new sins on my path to repentance. (Just being honest) Though my flesh at times contradicts the intent of my spirit, I press forward to becoming whom He would have me to be. Since the Lord has drawn me closer to Him, I've become intimately acquainted with just a "shadow" of what The Son had to endure. Loneliness, depression, shame, hurt, backbiting, unwarranted attacks on my character....these have become companions at times. Daily they seek me out, and try to deter me from my purpose.
My closest companions speak ill of me, others have outright abandoned me. Those I hope to do the most for, think and speak the least of me. Yet I am not angry. I feel not the slightest hint of contempt. How can they be held accountable for something they can not comprehend? How can I expect them to bear the cross made for me? Rather the weight of the cross created by my disobedience. (That's why I said a "shadow" of what The Son had to endure, because the cross He bore was laden with our sins.) I know my bible scholars are saying, "The Lord wants to give you rest. Lay them burdens down!" To you I say, "AMEN!" Yet, to lay something down, you have to pick it up first....correct? Unfortunately to avoid these sufferings would only lead to more suffering. So I spend my time in the Garden, praying and being prepared.
Here now, with my knees in the dirt I seek Him. I draw upon His strength to carry it. I draw upon His care to soothe the wounds. I draw upon His promises to erase the doubts. I draw upon His love to keep me obedient. It's easy to be a "Christian" when you're on display and the masses are with you. It's easy to be faithful when all you can see is the doors opening up. It's easy to be obedient when it doesn't interfere with your comfort. AMEN.
I wouldn't love you if I didn't tell you this though. It will not always be that way. In fact, the closer you get to who He's purposed you to be....the more you'll know what it means to be in that Garden. The closer you get to Him, the more vicious the attacks you'll have to endure. The closer you get to Him, the further you'll feel from everyone else. What God has ordained for you to do, you WILL have to do alone. Others will be their to encourage you, love on you, pray for you. No one, not a soul on this earth, will be able to truly empathize with what you're going through. Why? Because you and you alone know the depth of what is going on inside of you. As transparent as we can be, some situations just can't be expressed. No one on this planet knows your individual hurts and hang ups. No one knows exactly what He's having to cut away inside of you, and build up within you, to get you to your greater. This process is something you will have to experience on your own. That is why there is such an emphasis on RELATIONSHIP with The Father. AMEN.
"Well Brother Adryann, I don't know if I agree with that." That's fine, I'm not expressing this so that you will agree. I just want you to be aware, so that when you're in that Garden you realize it's the best place you can be. You will never know that type of intimacy with The Father in any other way. Understand, the words in this scripture are true. "Yes, and all who desire to live godly in Christ Jesus will suffer prosecution." (2Timothy 3:12 NKJV) Take a little time and read 1Peter 4:12-16; Philippians 1:29; 2Timothy 2:3; and Matthew 10:22. Beloved these are but a few scriptures informing you of what is to come. On this day where we are drawn to remember His sacrifice, be sure you're aware of the undertaking placed on you. Consider yourself forewarned. Spend some time in deep reflection and accept this truth of your walk. Then go to The Father in prayer, so that when the time of affliction is upon you....you can willingly and fearlessly stand as His child. AMEN. I love you all, I'll be praying for you all.....see you in The Garden.
Be Blessed Be Faithful