“Father, if thou be willing, remove this cup from me; nevertheless not my will, but thine, be done.” Luke 22:42
God sends no road map to His obedient; we walk by faith. He gives no GPS to the faithful so they will always know where they are and what’s going on. They will see “through a glass darkly,” but walk on.
Thy will be done will be their guide.
Those four words.
Take the Lord Jesus, for instance…
No one can read of our Lord’s agony in the garden and come away thinking He was play-acting, role-playing, or merely setting an example. This was real life. As He contemplated what lay ahead, His pain was genuine, His agony profound.
Had there been any other way to carve out salvation for mankind, surely the Father would have granted it and Jesus would have taken it. Clearly, there was no other way.
The next time you find yourself thinking (or hear someone saying) that we get to Heaven by our good works outnumbering the bad, remember our Lord in Gethsemane. Had the way to salvation been simply by doing good works, God would have spared Jesus this agony. His message to earthlings would be something like, “You children be good now!”
That shallow works-oriented theology is the essence of most man-made religions of the world as well as the heart of most liberal sermons preached in Christendom.
The Father’s will was for Jesus to go to Calvary and pay the ultimate price for our salvation. His will today is that you and I come to Him through the cross, by the shed blood of the Lord Jesus Christ, our only sacrifice. Thereafter, His will is that we obey Him in all things, that “His will” be the driving force in our lives.
“Thy will be done on earth as it is in Heaven.”
Father, we ask for Thy will—nothing more, nothing less, nothing else. Through Jesus Christ, our only Savior, amen.
A friend tells me all this sounds good, but she is afraid of God’s will. “I mean He can put you into some awful dangerous and scary situations. I’m not sure I have the faith to pray that no matter what, I want God’s will.”
I reply, “I have two thoughts on that…
The compassionate character of God. Not only is He all-powerful but He is pure love. So much so that John says twice “God is love” (John 4:8,16).
The intimate knowledge of God. He who made us knows the plans He has for us, knows where we would fit best, and has no plans to try to wedge us into some awkward situation that would not be right for us.
So, trust Him. Even when you are afraid, trust Him. Even when the way is dark and the path uncertain, trust Him.
“Though He slay me, yet will I trust Him” (Job 13:15).
Lord, give me this kind of faith. Please. I’m not there yet, but I want to be.