He Loved Them Anyway

Then everyone deserted Him and fled—Mark 14:50

At the Passover feast, the disciples had all promised that they would never fall away, and Peter boasted that he would never deny Jesus. In the garden just hours later, in His moment of greatest despair, the disciples could not stay awake as He asked. And finally, when the crowd came to arrest Him, they did precisely what He predicted and what they vowed they would never do: They deserted Him. He knew they would, and He loved them anyway.

Jesus is not surprised by our failures; His love for us is not affected by our weakness. But He commands more from us. He still commands us to be faithful to Him, to love our brothers and to care for the poor, and to cleave to Him and never be ashamed of Him. Even though our flesh is weak while our spirits may be willing, He urges us toward faithfulness and love and fidelity.

Lord Jesus, I am just like these disciples. I have often deserted You or Your calling, and fled. I have often given in to my flesh and sought comfort and ease and rest rather than keeping watch with You in prayer or comforting those in need. Yet You love me, and still expect more from me. Stir up within me Your Spirit, Lord, in such measure that I am unswerving in my dedication to You, standing firm in the face of any persecution or opposition to You. I need Your Spirit to make me thus, Lord, because in my own strength and power I fail. God, I pray for more of You within me so I never again betray You.

Pray for the outpouring of Christ’s Holy Spirit within you, so that you can be faithful,  honorable, loving, and true—first to Jesus, and then to all your loved ones and your calling.

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