A personal Easter message from Daniel Kolenda
Not my will, but Yours, be done
As we prepare for Easter, I want to ask you to come with me to the Garden of Gethsemane. Let’s approach together with reverence and awe. Listen to those timeless words that fall from trembling lips, “Father, if it is Your will, take this cup away from Me; nevertheless not My will, but Yours, be done.” (Luke 22:42 NKJV)
I think we often overlook the significance of what happened in Gethsemane, but as it relates to our redemption, nothing could be more important. If Calvary is the door to salvation, Gethsemane was the hinge. It was here in this garden that the eternal future of humanity hung in the balance. It was here that our fate was decided. All of history was depending on this moment.
The secret of the surrendered will
Where Adam failed in the Garden of Eden, Jesus prevailed in the Garden of Gethsemane. And the key to Christ’s victory was the secret of His whole life, embodied in those seven immortal words, “Not my will, but Yours, be done.” The Roman soldiers seized Jesus and crucified Him, but they could not take His life, for He had already laid it down in Gethsemane. “No one takes My life from Me,” was Jesus’s confession, “but I lay it down Myself.” You cannot kill a man who is already dead! It is here that we find a great secret for discovering God’s will for our lives – the secret of the surrendered will.
We must begin by recognizing something so simple yet so significant: there may be a difference between what we want and what God wants. With this awareness, we must constantly make sure our will is surrendered to His. Many times, people embark on the journey to discover God’s will having already made up their minds about what they think God wants them to do. And often what they are actually seeking is divine validation of what they desire. If you truly want God’s will for your life, you cannot simply pray, “Your will be done.” You must include, “Not my will.”
Jesus fulfilled His own prayer
This is exactly what Jesus demonstrated when He was on earth. “Not my will, but Yours, be done,” was not just a prayer Jesus prayed one time before His crucifixion. This was the unvarying posture of His heart. He was living and walking in perfect submission to the will of God. Everywhere Jesus went, He taught about the kingdom, but He didn’t just talk about it, He demonstrated it!
First the kingdom was inside of Him because He was perfectly submitted to His Father’s will. And consequently, the kingdom was manifest wherever He went: the sick were healed, the dead were raised and demons fled. “Your will be done on earth, as it is in heaven” was not Jesus’s hopeful musing for an imaginary utopia. Jesus fulfilled His own prayer and showed us how it will be answered. Through Jesus, God’s will was being done on earth as it is in heaven, and this is what God desires to do through our lives as well.
It all begins when we come to a place where our will is submitted to God’s – “Not my will, but Yours, be done.” It is in this place of submission that we will discover and fulfil God’s will for our lives.
May this be the cry of our hearts this Easter! Let’s put our own wants and desires aside, and let God demonstrate His perfect will through our lives – lives that are beautifully, humbly submitted to Him.
Together with you for the Kingdom,
Evangelist Daniel Kolenda