There is no success without struggle. There’s no win with a war. We can only appreciate all the resurrection means by first remembering the price that was paid at Calvary. This week we contemplate in order to celebrate. Take some time to let the immense truths of the cross steep into your soul. Then receive the reality of the resurrection. As you journey through these Devos invite others to read them as well. Or, read them out loud as a family, or with a group of friends. Feel free to pass the content along in your conversations.
“. . . He was unwilling to drink." Matthew 27:34
Reaching for a temporary solution to deaden the pain is cunning, because the bottle and the pill promise to deliver a solution it can’t sustain. To successfully overcome any personal struggle, one must find something more rewarding than comfort and escape. We begin by realizing that the progress is in facing your problem and the pain.
Jesus hung on the cross covered in sweat, spit and blood. They offered Him a way to numb the affliction and control the suffering, but He refused. Jesus saw something far more valuable than escaping the hurt. This verse pushes us to contemplate the four things Jesus valued over taking the edge off his pain.
Called to live
The cross was the event toward which He looked, the goal for which He strained. Scripture tells us He set His face toward Jerusalem to endure the cross. He took our sin and guilt and offered Himself as the final sacrifice. It's more important to live towards God’s will than to numb out.
Considered the loss
Had Jesus drank from the cup offered and gone under the influence, think what might have been lost on the ones who heard Him pray for His murderers; lost to the soldier who confessed to Him; lost to His mother whom He cared for from the cross; lost on the thief who believed in Him; lost would have been the seven great words of love; lost would be all those who believed Him throughout history.
Confirmed His loyalty
Jesus refused the easy path of indulgence and chose self-denial. He stayed true to all God asked of Him. Had He drugged himself, all His words of surrender would be drained of their meaning. Being sober in spirit strengthens our story.
Continued to love
Jesus chose to love God over libation, had Jesus chosen an easy escape by sedating His soul with a drink, He would’ve lived for the moment instead of eternity. Many prefer a destructive habit of a momentary fix and never know God as their love and source of redemption.
Whether your cup is yelling at loved ones, popping a Xanax, doing a shot or starving yourself of affection, remember you are not the bottle or the bowl. Take your trouble and stand at the foot of the cross.
Find a cup or a glass set it in front of you, as you look at it ask yourself this question: What cup am I drinking from? Don’t sedate your suffering, submit it to Jesus.