“Therefore we do not lose heart. Even though our outward man is perishing, yet the inward man is being renewed day by day. For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, is working for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory, while we do not look at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen. For the things which are seen are temporary, but the things which are not seen are eternal.” 2 Corinthians 4:16-18
Have you ever been at a place in which it seemed as if you were being crushed?
Situations and circumstances can close in on us in such a manner that it can feel as if our life is literally being squeezed from us.
Jesus was in such a situation in the Garden of Gethsemane. On one hand, stood the Father’s will which led to a cross with its pain and humiliation. On the other hand stood the personal relief that would come from the rejection of the cross, but which carried with it the knowledge that countless people would be lost and the Father’s will left unfulfilled.
We can all relate to the human cry, “Father, if it is possible, let this cup pass from Me!” Jesus felt the pressure that was all around Him. He was in such a state of anxiety that He experienced a phenomenon called “hematidrosis”, a condition in which a human sweats drops of blood. The life was literally being squeezed from Jesus due to the pressure of the looming crisis before Him.
How do you keep going when you are under such pressure that you feel as if you can’t function?
Remember the scripture in 2 Corinthians 4:16. It tells us that outward pressure and crushing situations may lead to the destruction of some things in our life but, while that is happening, something new and weighty is being created by that pressure. Just as a diamond is created by the great internal pressures found within the earth’s crust, so the pressure we experience creates within us a greater depth of character, a deeper faith in God and a greater appreciation for the important things in life. The Bible calls it a “renewing” process. I once heard the Lord tell me, “You cannot experience resurrection until you experience death.” No one jumps into the front of the line to experience death due to our strong survival instinct but a person who experiences death also experiences freedom from many of the world’s constraints.
I know that this is not a popular message. Guess what? It’s not easy for me either. But, I have come to understand that, if you trust Jesus, life can truly come from death and beauty can come from ashes and the oil of joy can come from mourning.
Remember Jesus in the Garden?
Guess what the name “Gethsemane” means?
It means “olive press”.
The Garden of Gethsemane is a place where olive trees are grown. When olives are ripe for the harvest, they are taken and crushed so that the oil can be used. In Jesus’ day, olive oil was used for anointing things to be set aside for sacred purposes, as well as being used to create the fire that caused a lamp to burn.
While Jesus was being crushed by what lay before Him, an anointing was released for you and I that would cause us to be set aside for sacred purposes and cause us to burn with Holy Ghost fire!
We all face crushing situations. Memorize 2 Corinthians 4:16-18 so that you will be equipped to know God’s purpose in the midst of your personal “olive press”.
Afflictions don’t last forever, but the anointing created by them does! So, don’t allow your gaze to be fixed upon the things that will pass. Instead, fix your eyes upon Jesus, the One who began your life and the One who will finish it in glory! No matter how painful, what you are going through will eventually pass away in the light of the unchanging glory of God!
Don’t lose heart!!! Something supernatural is being created by the pressure of your situation! Submit to God! Resist the devil and he will flee! Pray the same prayer Jesus prayed when going through His crushing experience: “Not my will, but Yours be done!”
I see heaven invading your space! Resurrection life is waiting on the other side of death!
Psalm 118:17: “I shall not die, but live, and declare the works of the Lord.”
- How to Have Hope in the Hopeless Times (kellylevatino.com)