While meditating on the Rosary this passage always makes me stop, and reflect. The scene: Jesus is prostrate on the ground full of agony. Praying so hard, that his sweat becomes blood. He understood what came before him, what was to be his mission, and still he begged for the cup to be removed from him. Not because he wishes it, but by His Father’s will in heaven.
The Apostles: Peter, James, and John accompanied him to the garden, but they are further back while Jesus prayed. They just had the Passover meal with Jesus. The same meal that Jesus tells them that he will be betrayed, and it will happen that very night. He informs his friends that they will abandon Him. Of course Peter says, not him. He will stay with Jesus until his death, but Jesus tells Peter that he would deny knowing Jesus three times.
No wonder they were asleep in sorrow. They felt utterly helpless. There is nothing they could do to stop the events from unfolding before their eyes. They remain in their sorrow, and in their sorrow they slept.
To say that Jesus didn’t have sorrow like his Apostles is an understatement, after all, what he experienced in the garden was pure agony. Yet, instead of falling into a despair, he prayed. The harder the trial that was to come to him, the harder he prayed. He prayed so hard that his sweat became like blood.
Yet, in all His agony, he tells the Apostles:
“Rise and pray, so that you may not enter into temptation.”
Yet, how many of us fail to pray during difficult trials. How may of us are asleep with our sorrow or despairs?
Right before our Lord was about to undergo his greatest trial, He no doubt was tempted by the Evil One. Just like He was tempted when He started his ministry after His baptism. But during this time, Jesus asked for help, and in response Angles were sent to comfort him in his time of need, and to strengthen him. The disciples that were supposed to stay awake with him, were asleep.
Now Jesus knew what cup he must drink. He knew what was coming, which is why he fell into an agony, but his disciples were asleep for sorrow.”
There has been so many things in our lives Lord. Just too many things has happened for a person to fall into despair. But You remind us that we are to “rise and pray.” Even in our darkest moments, we are to lift up our hearts to You in prayer. We didn’t mean to drown in ourselves in our pain in sufferings, we don’t want to feel numb. We pray Lord, but when we do, sometimes its hard to focus.
During this time of difficulty, its so easy to fall into doubt and temptation. Its so easy to say that there is “no hope.” We know first hand that it’s hard not to feel down and out like the Apostles. You have taught us that instead of giving into our sorrows, we can pray more earnestly and ask for help during our difficult times.
When things gets rough, we tend to turn inward and our minds focuses on our problems. Looking at the disciples as our example, when that happens, we fall deeper into sorrow and we become numb.
There have been so many things that has happened in the past few months. Not just with me, but with other members of my family as well. There is so much to have sorrow over, but there is much room for rejoicing.
Jesus showed us that even in deep worries, concerns, or problems, we shouldn’t falter in our prayers. We shouldn’t be paralyzed or filled with doubt. Bad things happen to us because there is a greater good that only God can see.
This week, I know I’m going to be thinking about this a lot. When I’m sleeping, or wake up in the middle night upset about something, I do as our Lord commands:
Do you tend to falter in your prayers when things get more difficult? What are some ways that you stay focused during you daily trials?
This post was originally published on Feb 20, 2016. Updated on April 21st, 2017.