Saturday March 23, 2019
Today’s Focus Evening Prayer
Today’s Scripture Reading Matthew 26:36-46
Then Jesus went with them to the olive grove called Gethsemane, and he said, “Sit here while I go over there to pray.” 37 He took Peter and Zebedee’s two sons, James and John, and he became anguished and distressed. 38 He told them, “My soul is crushed with grief to the point of death. Stay here and keep watch with me.”
39 He went on a little farther and bowed with his face to the ground, praying, “My Father! If it is possible, let this cup of suffering be taken away from me. Yet I want your will to be done, not mine.”
40 Then he returned to the disciples and found them asleep. He said to Peter, “Couldn’t you watch with me even one hour? 41 Keep watch and pray, so that you will not give in to temptation. For the spirit is willing, but the body is weak!”
42 Then Jesus left them a second time and prayed, “My Father! If this cup cannot be taken away[f] unless I drink it, your will be done.” 43 When he returned to them again, he found them sleeping, for they couldn’t keep their eyes open.
44 So he went to pray a third time, saying the same things again. 45 Then he came to the disciples and said, “Go ahead and sleep. Have your rest. But look—the time has come. The Son of Man is betrayed into the hands of sinners. 46 Up, let’s be going. Look, my betrayer is here!”
Daily Reflection Luther’s Evening Blessing
In the evening when you go to bed, you are to make the sign of the holy cross and say:
God the father, Son, and Holy Spirit watch over me. Amen.
Then kneeling or standing say the Apostles’ Creed and the Lord’s Prayer. If you wish, you may recite this little prayer as well:
“I give thanks to you, heavenly Father, through Jesus Christ your dear Son, that you have graciously protected me today. I ask you to forgive me all my sins, where I have done wrong, and graciously to protect me tonight. Into your hands I commend myself; my body, my soul, and all that is mine. Let your holy angel be with me, so that the wicked foe may have no power over me. Amen.”
Some questions for reflection
- At the end of Jesus’ day and at the end of His ministry, Jesus takes time to pray with His friends. Nobody really knows the content of His prayer on this evening, but what do you think the content of His prayer might have been? Would it simply have been “let this cup pass from me?” Can you imagine if Jesus was able to give thanks in this moment?
Today’s discipleship challenge
- Openly discuss your thoughts on this topic with your group or a trusted friend
I give thanks to You, heavenly Father, through Jesus Christ Your dear Son, that You have graciously protected me today. I ask You to forgive me all my sins, where I have done wrong, and graciously to protect me tonight. Into Your hands I commend myself: my body, my soul, and all that is mine. Let Your holy angel be with me, so that the wicked fore may have no power over me. Amen.