Every person alive is guilty of trying to control things that God says are outside of our control. We’re guilty of plotting outcomes that God says we should not plot. We are guilty of claiming knowledge for things that God says cannot be known. We are guilty for holding on with a ridiculously tight grip to what we think we’re entitled to.
There is a better way. “Give up your life for my sake,” Jesus exhorts us. “That is how to save a life.” (See Matthew 10:39.)
Now if Jesus wasn’t about to put his money where his mouth was, we might blow past his “helpful advice.” But that’s not at all the case. Our Lord was about to carry his own cross to Skull Hill, where he would die the most brutal of deaths.
Matthew 26 is one of those chapters in the Bible that I can’t read without cringing and squinting my eyes. How desperately Jesus wanted out of this deal, and who wouldn’t? To die is one thing. To know you’re about to die—and in the manner Jesus faced—is quite another. We’d be begging God too.
Still, Jesus said, “Yet I want your will to be done, not mine” (Matthew 26:39).
I’m telling you: faithful to the end.
After returning to his friends and rebuking them for having fallen asleep (insert blushing, wide-eyed emoticon here), Jesus pleaded with his Father a second time. “My Father!” he said. “If this cup cannot be taken away unless I drink it, your will be done” (v. 42).
A second time, he returned to his men. A second time, he found them asleep.
A third time, Jesus went before his Father. Three times, he begged for relief. Knowing it was a futile request—knowing that this course was set—he went to his disciples and said, “Go ahead and sleep. Have your rest. But look—the time has come” (v. 45).
In this moment we see Jesus modeling for us what he asks us all to do. Sacrifice. Sacrifice, so that this world can be a better place. Sacrifice, in order to find God’s best. Sacrifice, so that God’s grand, redemptive plan can be realized throughout the earth.
Which begs the question, how well are we following suit?
What is God asking you to do that involves sacrificing something for his will, even if it’s not what you would have chosen?
Whoever finds his life will lose it, and whoever loses his life for my sake will find it.
Matthew 10:39 ESV
From A Greater Story with Sam Collier on Youversion