TITLE: Two Places For Help
DATE: October 9, 2019
Christ is risen. He is risen, indeed.
TEXT: Matthew 26:38 ESV - 38 Then he said to them, “My soul is very sorrowful, even to death; remain here, and watch[a] with me.”
Can’t tell you if this story is true or not. Either way, it’s a good story:
It begins with a woman who had recently gone to the plastic surgeon for a facelift. She was quite pleased with the results....until her last consultation with the surgeon.
As her doctor dismissed her, he gave this advice: "My dear, in all modesty, I have to confess that I have done an extraordinary job on your face. You have looked in the mirror and you have inspected my work. You agree with me. To do this work I have charged you a great deal of money and you were happy to pay it.
Now I would like to give you some free advice.
After you leave here, find a group of people who love God and who will love you enough to help you deal with all the negative feelings that you have inside of you. If you don't follow this advice, you'll be back in my office in a very short time with your face in a far sadder, lined and wrinkled state than it was before." The plastic surgeon was telling it like it is.
Our faces often reflect what is going on inside us. If we are constantly in turmoil, down and depressed, it will show up in the way we walk, the way we sit and stand, the way our faces age. How often have we not looked at a person and said in sympathy, "He looks like he's had a hard life."
Jesus had had a bitter life, as well.
From before birth He had been designated as the Offering Who would rescue sinful humanity. Between birth and death He had had a hard life. In the past he had been discouraged by the way His message had been ignored. Now, in the Garden of Gethsemane, He receives the sins of all humanity. Truly He is the Passover Lamb of God Who takes away the sins of the world. Who carries every sin of every person in every age.
No wonder He was overwhelmed, sorrowful unto death. As He suffered, there were only two places He could turn for support: His heavenly Father in prayer, and to the disciples.
His Father listened and strengthened Him with the sending of an angel, but the disciples ignored Jesus' request and fell asleep.
Now, I don't know where you turn for help when you are downcast, but may I suggest that there are still only two places to go: Jesus and to those around you like friends, family or government. Now you can be sure Jesus will help you.
Concerning your friends, I don't know. If they fall asleep while you hurt, they're not much good. But, if they support you with the love of God in your suffering, they can be a great assistance and it will show in your face and faith.
THE PRAYER - Lord Jesus, no one listens to me like You. Because you carried my sins, You understand. Thank you, dear Lord, for being there. Amen.
The music which introduces and concludes our devotions was written by Guy Baumann. He along with three of his brothers perform on the album: The Baumann Brothers which may be ordered here: http://thebaumannbrothers.com/index.html