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Tuesday, April 19, 2011

In the Garden

By Cheryle M. Touchton

My Father, if it is possible, may this cup be taken from me. Yet not as I will, but as you will. Matt 26:39 NIV

On Holy Week, I think about Jesus praying alone in Gethsemane. His soul was overwhelmed to the point of death. He took His disciples to the garden but they had to sit and wait outside. Imagine the emotion as Jesus begged, “Daddy, if possible, take this cup from me.” Then, my sweet Savior modeled acceptance and obedience by finally saying, “Yet not as I will, but as you will.”

What sends you to the garden alone? Because of my oldest son, David Paul Touchton, I got into the habit of going into the garden regularly. Bob and I met our adorable David when he was six. He moved in on this 7th birthday. God gifted David intellectually and musically and for a few years, it seemed like his future was bright. When his future fell apart, there was no putting it back together. I begged God to take the cup of David’s mistakes from us but my poor troubled David, broken before I ever met him, used his free will to ruin his life and break my heart. David found God again the last year of his life and when he died of AIDS in 1995, the only place for me was in the garden.

I had to go alone. I wanted my family and friends to enter the garden with me but all they could do was sit outside and pray. At first, I was mad to be there alone but God taught me that there are times when I have to enter alone. I had begged God to heal my son and had to accept that God gave David His perfect healing in eternity. I left that garden finally saying, “Yet not as I will, but as you will.”

In the Garden* is my favorite hymn is. I love it. I understand it. I’ve told my family to sing it at my funeral. I ignored nephew Bill when he asked, “If you’re dead, why do you care what we sing?” I’ve warned everyone that they are not to leave out any of the verses because together, they tell a story. I’ve tried to get my family of singers to learn it for me while I’m still alive but they don’t seem as excited about it as I am. Anytime there is a hymn request, I ask this hymn to be sung. I include it in conferences that I lead. I have many different recordings and when I listen to In a Garden, I feel God telling me that I am His own.

Verse 1- In the Garden*

I come to the garden alone.
While the dew is still on the roses.
And the voice I hear falling on my ear,
The son of God discloses.

I no longer wait for tragedy to send me to the garden. My special time with God is early in the morning. I enter that holy time alone. If I’m still, quiet, and listen carefully, the voice I hear falling on my ear, the son of God discloses. Don’t misunderstand. I’ve never been blessed to hear the audible voice of God. I had an aunt who heard voices and we locked her up so if I heard voices, I wouldn’t admit it anyway. Nevertheless, I do hear God’s voice in the early morning while the dew is still on the roses.

Verse 2- In the Garden*

He speaks and the sound of His voice,
Is so sweet the birds hush their singing,
And the melody that He gave to me,
Within my heart is ringing.

As soon as my eyes open, the rush of anticipation of my time with God washes over me. I awaken hungry so I rush through my breakfast, quickly make my coffee, and trot upstairs with my dog Belle to my special vibrating recliner and kneeling bench. I kneel before the window and the sweet sound of God’s voice rings in my heart. I sit in my chair, open my Bible, and read the melodious words of God. If weather permits, I go outside. At first, I listen to the birds but the voice of God is so sweet that, to my ears, even the birds hush their singing.

Verse 3- In the Garden*

I’d stay in the garden with Him.
Though the night around me be falling,
But He bids me go, through the voice of woe,
His voice to me is calling.

I want to stay in the garden but the work of the day beckons. If what I hear in garden is difficult and the day ahead of me dark, I beg to stay in the garden but God bids me to Go, through the voice of woe. When I beg for my cup to be removed, I wait in the garden until I can pray, “Yet not as I will, but as you will.”

Chorus- In the Garden*

And He walks with me, and He talks with me,
And He tells me I am His own;
And the joy we share as we tarry there,
None other has ever known.

As I leave the garden, the chorus stays with me. God walks with me and He talks with me throughout my day. When I’m frightened or uncertain, He whispers that I am His own. The joy we share as God and I walk together in the garden surpasses anything I have ever known.

*In the Garden – Words and Music by Austin Miles

Copyright: Pocket Full of Change Ministries

1 comment:

  1. I agree. It.s abeautiful song, and it touches my heart. As a teenager I used to take my guitar out on the street and use music to open oportunities to talk to people about Jesus. This song was one that was requested. I'm 71 now, and cant sing like then, but I still love that song.


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