An angel from heaven appeared to him and strengthened him. And being in anguish, he prayed more earnestly, and his sweat was like drops of blood falling to the ground. (Luke 22:43-44)
Here we see a ministering angel sent to strengthen our Lord as He prays in anguish.
-K.H. Von Bogatzky
I love the fact that God sent an angel to strengthen our Lord! I am reminded of Psalm 91:
For he will command his angels concerning you to guard you in all your ways.
I also love the example Jesus models for us to follow when our own time of anguish arrives–He earnestly sought His Father in prayer. God was His refuge–as He is ours. While Christ was not delivered from His sufferings, He was strengthened and supported under them. We are always given the grace sufficient to meet every difficulty God allowed us to face.
Oftentimes during trials and calamities it is difficult to remember the promises of God. I have found Psalm 91 to be a very helpful passage of scripture to turn to. Indeed, I have found it to be so profitable in my life I have committed it to memory. I call it the “I will” Psalm of God. In the sixteen verses of this psalm we find the word “will” used over 20 times! It points to God as being our faithful refuge, fortress, and protector as we rest in His shadow–even through our anguishing trials. This wonderful psalm ends with these encouraging words:
“Because he loves me,” says the LORD, “I will rescue him; I will protect him, for he acknowledges my name. He will call upon me, and I will answer him; I will be with him in trouble, I will deliver him and honor him. With long life will I satisfy him and show him my salvation.” (Psalm 91:14-16)
God rescues, protects, and answers. He is with us in trouble. He delivers and honors and satisfies. Who could ask for greater promises than these?
For this reason he had to be made like his brothers in every way, in order that he might become a merciful and faithful high priest in service to God, and that he might make atonement for the sins of the people. Because he himself suffered when he was tempted, he is able to help those who are being tempted. (Hebrews 2:17-18)
Take It to Heart
“Grief exalts us, and troubles lift us.” (Charles Spurgeon)
“The one who gives the power gets the glory.” (John Piper)
“Peace comes not from the absence of trouble, but from the presence of God.” (Alexander Maclaren)
“Faith raises the soul above the difficulty, straight to God Himself, and enables one to stand still. We gain nothing by our restless and anxious efforts … It is therefore true wisdom, in all times of difficulty and perplexity, to stand still–to wait only upon God, and He will assuredly open a way for us.” (C.H. Mackintosh)