The Only Way Through It, Is, Well, Through It

In the hours before the horror of the Easter Story began to unfold, Jesus sat with a number of disciples and asked them to “Stay and watch with Me.”  He also prayed, prayed in a way known to the broken, known to those facing overwhelming pain and disappointment.

Within that prayer, one section is especially noted in the Gospel of Matthew. “Going a little farther, he fell with his face to the ground and prayed, “My Father, if it is possible, may this cup be taken from me. Yet not as I will, but as you will.”

It is easy to read this prayer as a plea for the cup of suffering to pass from Him.  But there is more there on a closer reading. Note – the Cup will pass, but it will only pass with it drinking.  Restated, the only way through is through.  This is knowledge we can possess at our core.  (see the following clip from Harry Potter)

Yet we live in such a way that we would never choose that – of course one would reject suffering.  Of course we would push the cup away.  But the Divine plan includes a falling, a falling that is needed for life to spring anew.  That is the right kind of dying.  Of course it is often accompanied by pain.  But faith is the understanding that there is a Knower, there is a purpose which we can only glimpse as we enter the valleys of life’s journey.

I been been witness to this death over and over again in people whose courage is simply breathtaking.   In the midst of the storm, of course they don’t see it as such and resolutely push back on any accolades.  But those are the very still, quiet, strong souls who somehow keep it all together and here I speak of a “keeping it all together” on a much broader plain than their individual lives.  They are the community of saints in a certain respect who balance the lives of those around them in unforeseen ways.

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