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Seven Perfect Words
Theme of the Week: Holy Week: Choosing the Cross
Monday, April 14, 2014

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Key Bible Verse: Then he went a short distance farther and fell on his face and prayed, "My Father, if it's possible, take this cup of suffering away from me. However—not what I want but what you want." (Matthew 26:39, CEB)

Dig Deeper: Matthew 26:36-46; Luke 22:39-46

In Gethsemane, Jesus is locked in combat with a human desire we all recognize: to avoid pain, to hold onto life, to win against death. In these dark night hours, Jesus's flesh and feelings are at war. "If it's possible … ," he groans.

Do you see what is at stake for us in that struggle? If Jesus's human desire does not lose, we will never win. If he doesn't suffer this temptation, we will never be able to overcome when we are tempted.

Until Gethsemane, Jesus's life has been one continual yes to the Father. And that doesn't change this night in the garden. The only begotten Son is on a mission of love and the Father's desire is for Jesus to finish the work he has been sent to do.

Where does Jesus find the strength to overcome? I find the answer in seven perfect words [in Luke 22:42, KJV]:

Not my will, but thine, be done.

At Gethsemane, although Satan has done his best to confuse and deceive him, Jesus chooses painful obedience. If choice is one side of the coin in overcoming temptation, then cost is the other.

Not my will, but thine, be done.

He is willing to lose all so that we can win all.

—Michael Card in A Violent Grace

My Response: When is it hardest for me to pray those "seven perfect words"?

Adapted from A Violent Grace by Michael Card (IVP, 2013) by permission. All rights reserved by the copyright holder and/or the publisher. May not be reproduced.

Prayer for the Week
Thank you, suffering Redeemer, for paying the price for my sin. ... And through me, in some small or large way today, bring your priceless redemption to others.—Michael Card

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Curt Schleicher

April 14, 2014  9:31am

It is the most challenging to say these 7 words, when I really, really desire and request something be accomplished in my life but its in conflict with what your Word has to say about my request….that it's selfish, self-centered, etc. etc. etc. Thank you for reminding me of the ultimate sacrifice Jesus paid on the Cross for my sins. Make me more cognizant of the times I hold tight to my will and must let go to be in line with your will. In Jesus Name I pray Amen.

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