Matt. 26:36-46 and Luke 22:41-44
As I am sitting in my quiet place watching it lightly snow, I find the Lord speaking to me about the word “separation.” It is hard being separated from my family, friends, church family, the sweet lady at Wal-Mart that I enjoy talking to or just the face-to-face contact with people I so miss! On Saturday, preparing for Easter service, a precious gal whom I usually hug looked at me from a distance and said “air hug.”
Human touch is such a powerful gift God has given us and that we miss in times of separation. One Saturday Ed and I took a drive to one of our grandkids’ home. I had a bag of goodies I had made for them, and as I opened the door on the truck to hand out the goodies, my grandson rushed in between the crack in the door to hug me and hug me hard. I needed that hug as much as he did. “Separation does make the heart grow fonder!”
As Easter has passed, my thoughts this morning kept going to that word “separation.” Jesus felt separation every day of his 33 years on this earth separation from His Father, and the glory of heaven, His home. To see His creation laden down and broken with sin is beyond what I can even imagine. The question I started to ask is, “How did Jesus handle thisseparation from His Father?”
The answer is found in Matthew 26 and Luke 22. He sought out a quiet place to talk to His Father. His Spirit needed renewal and to be strengthened. He needed to commune with His Father. He was hard pressed on all sides, everyone wanting some of His time. He knew, however, that without the Father He could not handle what lay ahead of Him. Separation drew Him to His knees and into the very presence of His Father.
Separation has the power to remind us of what we do and do not have. It can cause us to be thankful, grateful, and humbled, or it can cause depression, discouragement and even self-absorption. God, however, wants us to see separation from His perspective and through His eyes. When Jesus asked His Father to remove the cup of death and sin from Him, He knew the separation was coming. Separation from His Father and the indescribable burden of carrying ALL of the WORLD’S SIN.
This separation was the struggle Jesus was going through when He sweat drops of blood in Luke 22. The disciples had yet to totally understand what was really happening. In verse 45 and 46 of Luke, Jesus finds them asleep! The New King James version says they were asleep from sorrow! Separation can cause sorrow, but in verse 46 Jesus says, “Rise and pray, lest you enter into temptation.”
When we separate ourselves from God because of sin, it causes us to sleep, and temptation comes! Jesus was separated from the Father in order that we might not know that sameseparation! WOW! He separated Himself from the Father to minimize our separation and to eliminate our sin. Wipe it out, destroy its hold on us. Knowing this, what then should we do? We do what Jesus told us to. “Rise and pray!” “Rise and pray!” because Jesus has triumphed over our separation!
Romans 8:32-39 sums it up for us:
“He who did not spare His own Son, but delivered Him up for us all, how shall He not with Him also freely give us all things?
Who shall bring a charge against God’s elect? It is God who justifies.
Who is he who condemns? It is Christ who died and furthermore is also risen, who is even at the right hand of God, who also makes intercession for us. Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword?
As it is written: ‘For Your sake we are killed all day long; we are accounted as sheep for the slaughter.’ Yet in all these things we are more than conquerors through Him Who loved us.
For I am persuaded that neither death nor life, nor angels nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, nor height, nor depth, nor any other created thing, shall be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.”
Love and prayers until we meet again,