Trust | Discipleship Prayer Day 24

Teach me...to trust in you more and more.

Let love ( hesed ) and faithfulness never leave you;

bind them around your neck,

     write them on the tablet of your heart.

Then you will win favor and a good name

     in the sight of God and man.

Trust in the LORD with all your heart

     and lean not on your own understanding;

  in all your ways submit to him,

     and he will make your paths straight.

― Proverbs 3:5-6

For those living among the hilly and rocky terrain of Israel, the promise of a straight, smooth path was no small thing! Trusting in the Lord makes the journey easier. It does not mean our problems are erased so that we can live happy and carefree lives unburdened by the weight of this world.

We still live in a broken world, our lives touched by all manner of brokenness, but we can walk with joy regardless,…

…strengthened by the unfailing love and salvation given by God (Ps 13:5) and the joy, peace, and hope that is poured into our hearts by the Holy Spirit (Rm 15:13).

Jesus in the garden, realizing that his ministry and all the work that he and his friends have worked so hard to accomplish is about to come to a violent end, asks the Father to “take this cup” from him (Lk 22:42). Will Jesus finally do what Messiah was expected to do and show his mighty power? Will he and the others take up their swords and begin a God-ordained rebellion to restore Israel to its rightful place? Will he send out a war cry to the legions of angels looking down upon him? Or, will he trust in the Father with all his heart, even when understanding is limited, and submit?

“Take this cup…

…not my will but yours be done,”

Jesus finally prays these word, as sweat flows from his brow like blood (Luke 22:42).1

How was Jesus able to pray this?

And then actually follow through with it?

And why?

— Hesed —

Love is a poor translation for hesed, but it’s the best we’ve got. Hesed includes unending love, unshakeable loyalty, uncompromised devotion, unfailing kindness, and unbounded mercy, just to get started. It is the closest Old Testament equivalent to agape in the New Testament. Jesus was able say “not my will” because he had tied hesed and faithfulness to himself and refused to let it go, even under the most dire of circumstances. Hesed and faithfulness were written on his heart.

These words of Psalm 3:5-6 are also given to us, and the example of Christ is right there in front of us, along with the call to become more like him.

Those who know your name trust in you, for you, LORD, have never forsaken those who seek you.

― Proverbs 9:10

In Christ, we have an example of the kind of

trust-filled, hope-filled, love-filled life of holiness

that God desires of all who seek guidance, wisdom, and refuge from the Almighty. Jesus knew the name of his Father and he trusted that, no matter what happened, his Father would never forsake him.

We know and claim the name of Christ as our identity and our purpose. We can trust, too, that no matter what crosses our path in this life (good or bad, rain or shine, right or wrong), we will also be not be forgotten.

1

Note : It’s not reflected in Scripture (writing parchment was scarce and expensive, so there was no space for multiple ellipses or empty space), but I can’t help but wonder how long the pause was between “take this cup” and “not my will.” I also can’t help but wonder if this same prayer had been playing through his mind and heart for days…weeks…or months prior to this moment.