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Sketchy Heart    From My Utmost for His Highest

Rise, let us be going —Matthew 26

One of Chambers’ strengths is the ability to take the smallest piece of Scripture and draw it into a real life scenario. It’s a great yin to my yang because I try and expand perspective and put Scripture into the context of the greater story at play within the Gospel.

Chambers looks at this experience the Apostles had in Gethsemane and the despair they felt at falling asleep in Jesus’ last hours. His message is that Christians will fail, but that to avoid despair we must “rise… [and] be going.”

In the course of these 75 verses, linked above in Matthew 26, we near the crescendo of an old story. Spread over thousands of years, this is the story of a great One, worthy of love and praise, Who is denied it by an entire family-your family. So over many lifetimes, One follows, waits, helps, encourages and admonishes with loving wisdom at each turn so that at just the right moment…

Jesus comes. To continue this thought, you really must have an inkling as to why the cross was necessary. I mean, couldn’t God just snap his fingers to cover sin? I deal with this more comprehensively in chapter 6 (The Wait of the Gospel) in A Rooster Once Crowed, but essentially God, the great Creator, Who holds the universe with His Word, chose not only to pay the debt but to also win humanity (His adopted family) back. And to do that, it required something BIG. Essentially, the cross was the sacrifice that the adopted (you, me, humanity from all time) demanded to know that One so powerful truly loved them.

So here, in Gethsemane, we have apostles who are to “rise” and “be going,” but also, God, caught in the very act of rising and going. At the culmination of an event that would define the universe, Jesus rose and went.

The Apostles’ despair was due to their own actions (falling asleep in Gethsemane). But Jesus’ despair was due to His own action, too (see The Dilemma of Obedience blog post on Genesis 15 from a few weeks back). The difference is love.

When I despair over a mistake, it’s typically because I love something more than God. More often than not, the idol I have crowding out God is time—controlling it and being a master over it. In Gethsemane, Jesus’ despair was God’s irresistible love hurtling toward His own immovable holiness. And again, God chose us: love won. [Tweet-able?]

Thinking of that and knowing that if everyone else had been ok, God, considering you a son/daughter, would still have come down makes it easier for me to “rise” and “be going.” Because a day is coming when a day will be like a thousand years and a thousand years like a day. It won’t matter as much the mistakes we made. But it will be of all importance what we did from despair.

Do you want to have dried up from it? Do you want to have carried it around forever? Do you want to be forever defined by the act for which you despair, or by the rising and going? [Maybe tweet this one?]

I love you.




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