Praying in the Garden
For a long time, I viewed the phrase, “Not my will, but Thine be done” as a surrender to the authority of God. It’s as though I would tell God, “This is what I want. This is what needs to be done, but I guess it’s Your call. (sigh) So, do what You want.” Then I read something in a book that changed my view on this phrase forever.
The person wrote something to the effect of, “‘Not my will, by Thine be done.’ is not so much about giving in to God’s might. It’s about recognizing that God’s will is good and perfect. He loves us. It’s also about recognizing that our will is corrupted by sin. This prayer is a desperate cry to God that His will be done because His will is better than anything we could ever conceive.”
In this new light, the prayer moves away from me being like a child upset that His dad won’t let him do what he wants and moves toward me clinging to my loving Father in the midst of a frightening and overwhelming moment or looking to His wisdom when I am unsure.
Now, I gladly, even desperately sometimes, pray for God’s will to be done over my own in a similar way that when I fly, I prefer a professional pilot fly the plane rather than demanding I be allowed in the cockpit. Something tells me the other passengers on the plane also prefer that.
In Christ’s Service,