Lent 07: Day 14 – Sometimes…

Sometimes love is tired. The eleven disciples who shared the end of the Passover meal with Jesus all claimed to love him. They all said that they would die with him if necessary and of course would never deny him.

They all went with Jesus to Gethsemane, but he took Peter, James, and John a little further with him to a private area to pray. He said to them:

My soul is exceedingly sorrowful, even to death. Stay here and watch with Me. Matthew 26:38 [Emphasis added]

Instead they fell asleep. Jesus woke them and asked Peter:

Then He came to the disciples and found them sleeping, and said to Peter, “What! Could you not watch with Me one hour? Watch and pray, lest you enter into temptation. The spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak.” Matthew 26:40-41

Again, they fell asleep. When he came back and found them sleeping, he left them alone, and went to pray a third time. when he came back the final time he aroused them with:

Are you still sleeping and resting? Behold, the hour is at hand, and the Son of Man is being betrayed into the hands of sinners. Rise, let us be going. See, My betrayer is at hand.

Most of the time our love is like that, filled with good intentions, but not up to the reality of the task. He offered three of his disciples a very special moment, but like the handmaidens in the parable, they could not stay awake and missed a significant opportunity. Jesus had given them the chance to share in his decision point in the garden and they foolishly slept the moment away. He sought the comfort of loving friends; they sought the comfort of ready sleep.

I do not doubt they believed that they really loved him. But, that night love was tired. It succumbed to heavy eyelids rather than respond to the behest of their Lord and Savior.

We are similar. We all say we love God, but often our love is tired. It is too tired on a Sunday morning to get up for services, too tired for morning or evening prayers, too tired to read that Bible or do that study; it is just too tired. When you think about it, we are too tired an awful lot. We might even be in danger of making a minor idol out of our bed pillow.

Remember what I said earlier about agape, about the love with sacrifice at its center. It is the love that choses, and then honors that choice. Tired or not, to steal a line from Nike, it just does it. So should we. We need to just do it. Less talk, less concern for feeling it, and more actually doing it.

Love may be tired, but that is when the lovers are separated from the pretenders. Lovers just do it.

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