|He came to the disciples and found them sleeping. And he said to Peter, “So, could you not watch with me one hour” (Matthew 26:40, ESV)?Most likely, you’ve read and heard the story so often, you could almost quote the narrative by heart. You’ve spent time trying to picture what Jesus was enduring, both physically and spiritually, on that haunting night of His betrayal in the Garden of Gethsemane. You know about His anguish, about His sweat becoming “like great drops of blood falling down to the ground” (Luke 22:44), about His heroic prayer of surrender, “My Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me; nevertheless, not as I will, but as you will” (Matthew 26:39).
But perhaps one aspect of this event, implied though not explicitly narrated, has escaped your attention, at least in how it might relate to you in a practical sense. When Jesus separated Himself from Peter, James, and John so He could be alone before the Father, He prayed for a solid hour. And after coming back to find His disciples asleep, He prayed again for a solid hour. Then at least part of a third. More than two hours of praying.