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How To Pray When Life Is Hard

All of us want life to be easy. There's no sin in wanting to avoid pain, discomfort, difficulty or betrayal. But, it's our response to suffering when it does come—and it will—that reveals how fully we show the world who Jesus is.

In Luke 22:39-46, knowing that Judas will betray Him, Jesus models how to pray when the agony of life presses down on us with a weight that seems unbearable. He prays, “‘Father if you are willing, take this cup from me; yet not my will, but yours be done’” (Luke 22:42).

Jesus decides to pray just a stone's throw from His disciples, close enough for His disciples to hear. Perhaps Jesus urges them to stay awake so they might witness the attitude that would prevent them from denying Jesus as Lord in the desperation and fear He knew was coming.

Jesus shows us that it's OK to be deeply anguished in real trouble, and it's OK to ask God for deliverance. But, the greatest lesson Jesus teaches here is to want God's perfect plan above all—not our own comfort. The suffering that Jesus was about to endure would bring about God’s perfect plan of rescuing us. God’s plans are always better than our plans, even if we can’t see how in the moment. He never promises us a life free of suffering. But, He does promise us His presence to endure through it.

Are we true worshipers of Jesus, open to God's will whatever it is? Or, are we worshipers of an idol—a god whose job is to bless our dreams and protect us from all discomfort?


  • Has there recently been an event in your life that has troubled you or taken you out of your comfort zone?
  • How do you respond when pain or discomfort comes?
  • What is one way you can let go of your own comfort and accept God's will above your own?

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