Abiding Treasure: Sit, Watch and Pray by Bryan Craig
Then Jesus went with them to a place called Gethsemane, and he said to his disciples, “Sit here, while I go over there and pray.” And taking with him Peter and the two sons of Zebedee, he began to be sorrowful and troubled. Then he said to them, “My soul is very sorrowful, even to death; remain here, and watch with me.” And going a little farther he fell on his face and prayed, saying, “My Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me; nevertheless, not as I will, but as you will.” And he came to the disciples and found them sleeping. And he said to Peter, “So, could you not watch with me one hour? Watch and pray that you may not enter into temptation. The spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak.” Matthew 26:36-41
You’ve heard the verse, “Be still and know that I am God.” Psalm 46:10 Some have said this could be the theme verse for The Journey and abiding. God is inviting us into a deeper relationship, but it requires us to be still. This scene from the last moment Jesus would be with His disciples really stirs my heart.
He tells them to Sit. In the quietness of the night, while Jesus is wrestling in anguish with the biggest trial He would ever face as a man, He wanted two of His closest followers by His side. Our silent presence in the midst of our brothers and sisters who are suffering is powerful. We so often think we have to say something profound or wise, when our loving presence is all that is really needed. We need only to be still.
Watch…Jesus knew that evil and temptation were at the doorstep. They always seem to be near. He was needing “watchmen on the wall” who would keep an eye out for evil. This calling still remains for men and women who follow Christ. Just when we think we are doing great, in our moments of self-righteousness, we may find that we are indeed weak and prone to temptation. We must never let our guard down or think too highly of ourselves. We must be watchful.
Pray…Jesus, the Master, again teaches that Prayer is our greatest weapon. Prayer is what makes our spirits strong and helps us overcome our weak flesh. In prayer, we, like Jesus can conform our mind and our will to His Will. Just like Jesus, we can say, even amidst great struggle, “Not as I will, but as You will.”
I want to make sure I’m making time to be still, to sit with Jesus. I want to quiet my heart and just listen. As I get still and listen, I believe I will hear Jesus praying next to me. His prayers will inform my prayers, if I listen.
I want to watch. Like Superman flying through the air, looking right and left to see who needs rescue, I need to pay attention to the needs around me. I very well may be part of the solution. I also may be able to thwart evil that is lurking at my door or at the door of those I love.
I want to pray. Prayer is the main offensive weapon. Prayer is how I gain the mind of Christ and how I can prepare myself for the battles ahead. Prayer is how I can be Jesus’ companion and join in His suffering, and in doing so, gain great spiritual strength. If I am not praying, I’m vulnerable.
Lord Jesus, forgive me, for times that I’ve fallen asleep on the job. So often, I’ve let you carry all of my burdens and do all the praying and suffering. I haven’t been a good friend to You. I’m sorry, Lord. I want to be one of your warriors, a true watchman on the wall. I want to have your back. I want to do whatever You need me to do to help You on Your mission to save the world. Lord, I will do better at sitting, watching and praying, not out of a legalistic duty, but out of a love for You, my King, my hero, my Lord.
In Your Name, I live.