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By Rev. Wayne Palmer

Lenten Devotion

And there appeared to Him (Jesus) an angel from heaven,
strengthening Him. And being in an agony He prayed more
earnestly; and His sweat became like great drops of blood
falling down to the ground (Luke 22:43-44).

Read Luke 22:43-44.

At some point in our lives, many of us will face a moment
when the doctor says, "There's nothing more I can do." You
get word that a loved one has died unexpectedly. As the
realization sinks in so does hopelessness, shock, and the
unrelenting pain of reality. Like Jesus, all we can do is
come to our Father on our knees, and pour out our hearts.

The Father has laid a burden on His Son that no human
can bear, and even Jesus' perfect human nature becomes
faint under the burden. In tender love and compassion the
Father sends an angel from heaven to His dear Son.
Through that angel He provides the strength Jesus' body
requires to fulfill its part in accomplishing God's gracious
plan of salvation. Later we will see Jesus' physical strength
give out again as He attempts to carry the cross and
collapses under its weight. But for now, strengthened by
the angel, Jesus can fully face the dread welling up inside

In agony, He prays even more earnestly, deeply,
emotionally than before, and the inner turmoil in His soul
pours itself out through His body. Doctors tell us severe
mental stress can cause small blood vessels in the skin
to burst, mingling blood into the sweat. The physician Luke
tells us, "His sweat became like great drops of blood falling
down to the ground." This was the intense struggle our Savior
wrestled through, working to accept as His own His Father's
will to suffer and die for our salvation.


Lord Jesus, help me never to shrink back from life's troubles,
but to always bring them to You in prayer; as You brought
Your needs to Your Father in heaven. Amen.

(Lutheran Hour Ministries)

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