Friday, March 31, 2017

To Go a Little Farther.

Upon entering the first phase of the atonement in Gethsemane, Jesus said to Peter, James, and John:

38 Then saith he unto them, My soul is exceeding sorrowful, even unto death: tarry ye here, and watch with me. (Matthew 26)

Jesus had begun to feel a deep, harrowing anxiety within him, so much so that death wallowed in his soul. It is fair to say that Jesus knew of, and had already started to feel, the infinite pain and suffering that would fully fall over him in just a moment. He did not want to begin, shrink, and fail to complete the everlasting task. However, I find strength in the next scripture.

39 And he went a little further, and fell on his face, and prayed, saying, O my Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me: nevertheless not as I will, but as thou wilt.

We Must remember that Jesus had his own weaknesses as a mortal. It was part of his charge to be subject to temptation and aspects of the human experience on this earth. It says that he went a little further, and in another scripture it mentions the distance of a stone tossed. However, when I read the first portion of the verse, I read that he kept on going, that he kept trying, that he pushed himself to do something difficult. Just like any other reasonable person, Jesus would want to avoid pain. He didn't necessarily want to feel endless amounts of pain; no one would. However, his desire to do the will of Heavenly Father was greater than his desire to relieve himself of the self-sacrifice he had to commit. If I could put the last phrase in other words, I would write: Father, I don't want to be in pain. Doing extremely difficult things is not pleasant. Nevertheless (I'd still use this word), I know you need me to do this, and so I will.

We will not, and don't want to, feel the suffering that Jesus experienced in that garden. However, we can learn a valuable lesson of endurance from the Savior's valiant example. There are many things in our lives that are difficult. There are many things that we would rather not do because they are so difficult and we don't want to find ourselves failing in the act of attempting. I feel this time to time within school and as I look towards the future. Uncertainty certainly is something we seldom welcome. But, this excerpt from the scriptures can provide motivation to us all to move forward with faith into lengthy storms and to rely on our Heavenly Father for strength and hope in our troubling and challenging times. I know that we all have the ability to go a little farther; it is a God-given gift.

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