Yesterday was Palm Sunday, a day in the Church when we celebrate the event of Jesus’ triumphant entry into Jerusalem recorded in the Gospels. It marked the beginning of Holy Week, the final week of Lent. It was a day of highs for Jesus’ Disciples, I’m sure, because in just a few days their world would seemingly crash to the ground.
Jesus knew it. He knew that the praising and singing as he rode in on the back of a donkey not only fulfilled prophecy from long ago, but it would be short lived. Soon, very soon, The praise and rejoicing of who He was would turn to bitterness and hate. And in the end, He would be handed over for a false trial and execution meant for us. It was the plan all along, since before the beginning of time. A plan to rectify sin, to bridge the gap between us and God. It was a mission only Jesus could fulfill.
Leading up to that culmination of His mission, Jesus displays emotion for His pending suffering in such a raw way. In these two moments I think we get a glimpse into the humanity of Christ. They are moments that make me stop, have a pause in my heart and meditate on His words.
“Now is my soul troubled. And what shall I say? ‘Father, save me from this hour’? But for this purpose I have come to this hour.”– John 12:27
Can you feel the internal struggle? Do you see the humanity of Jesus in this moment, wrestling with the emotions of knowing your death is ahead of you? Even though He knows the final outcome, Jesus still experienced the harsh reality of human emotion in the face of hardship.
As time grew closer, His feelings intensified. Days later, before His betrayal took place, Jesus got away from His Disciples to pray. He sought solitude to be with His Father, and in that moment we see Jesus experiencing raw human emotion in the midst of struggle so intense, an angel was sent to strengthen Him.
And he withdrew from them about a stone’s throw, and knelt down and prayed, saying, “Father, if you are willing, remove this cup from me. Nevertheless, not my will, but yours, be done.” And there appeared to him an angel from heaven, strengthening him. And being in agony he prayed more earnestly; and his sweat became like great drops of blood falling down to the ground.– Luke 22:41-44
I don’t know what struggles you are facing right now. Maybe with all the craziness in the world right now you do t have a job. You toss and turn at night wondering how your bills are going to get paid. Maybe you find yourself unable to eat because the stress and anxiety is so intense, you have no appetite.
Maybe you feel alone, trapped by your emotions and feeing like no one understands.
I get it. I’ve been there. I’ve found myself deep in a depression, unsure of how things could ever get better. I’ve had days in a row of no appetite, making myself eat something just so I wouldn’t pass out. I’ve felt alone, stuck in a pattern of thinking that no one cared or could understand what I was going through. And you know what gives me hope in those moments?
Jesus gets it too.
He isn’t just the King of Kings. Remember, He willingly left His throne to walk this earth. He isn’t just the Savior. He endured pain and humiliation. He walked this earth, faced trials and temptations before He returned to His throne. If there was ever someone who can relate to you best, it’s Jesus.
In a week we celebrate my favorite event, Jesus’ resurrection. But before that could happen, Jesus had to suffer in my place. As you go through this week, as you face whatever emotions and struggles you have, remember Jesus gets it. He understands your loneliness, your pain; He gets the struggle you face.
Let Him walk with you through it, and lead you out of it. After all, there isn’t anyone more qualified and experienced than Him.