Mark 14: 32-34 “They went to a place called Gethsemane, and Jesus said to his disciples, “Sit here while I pray.” He took Peter, James, and John along with him, and he began to be deeply distressed and troubled. “My soul is overwhelmed with sorrow to the point of death,” he said to them. “Stay here and keep watch.”
One of Jesus’ main purposes of coming to Earth was to be a human example, giving us encouragement and hope for our daily lives. Reading the above passage, it was nice to know that even Jesus called on his dearest friends, the people closest to him in his ministry, for help right before the ultimate sacrifice he would make – dying on the cross for our sins, himself being without sin.
Notice, though, the example he gave. He did not go around telling everyone he met that he was upset, he did not try to get sympathy, or even try to have others handle his challenge for him. No, he separated three of his closest companions from the rest of the disciples, a select group already, and then allowed himself to be vulnerable with a trusted few. Even with them, though, he never asked them to take away his pain, only to help him keep watch, stay awake with him while he brought his concerns to his Heavenly Father, our real source of comfort.
I think that is a great example to follow. I know I, for one, hate to ask others for help. I never want to intrude on their busy lives and I am always afraid of bothering others with my petty concerns, but I am quick to live my life, showing my stressed-out self to anyone who will listen.
However, even though others cannot take my hard times away from me, or even do the work necessary to get through my personal challenges, Jesus’ example shows me that I do not have to be alone. It is okay to ask for help, it is okay to share my inmost feelings, and it is okay to accept help – in fact, if Jesus did it, then it is more than okay; it is the best way.
I throw out two challenges: The next time you are facing a really tough spot, who are two or three dear friends that you can ask to help “keep watch?”
And the final challenge is this: When you see a friend facing a really hard time in his or her life, are you willing to step up and say to that person: “Here I am, how can I keep watch for you?”