Holy Spirit has been shedding light on something, putting things together in a way I never really thought about before.
As Easter approaches I’ve been pondering Gethsemane and all Jesus went through. I had an “aha” moment the other day when the Holy Spirit reminded me, rather painfully, of how in the past I have felt badly that Peter and John were unable to stay awake and be with Jesus during His time of great need. But I’ve learned something about the human body that makes me regret the “tsk, tsk,” that I felt but never voiced.
What I learned is that the central nervous system has a limited capacity. Just like electrical wiring, our nervous system can only carry the amount of stimuli for which it was designed. Once we reach that amount we throw a circuit breaker, so to speak, and the system shuts down before it is damaged.
I can imagine the furrowed brows and the questioning looks so let me give an example. I was a soloist years ago. When I would go to church on Sundays I would only be there a few minutes before I started to yawn. When I was called to sing there was absolutely NO evidence of the yawning, but the moment I returned to my seat it started again.
This both puzzled and distressed me greatly. I repented regularly for appearing so bored that I would yawn in the Lord’s face. I mentioned it one time to my friend, Dr. Jim Wilder, who is a psychologist. Knowing that I am highly sensitive, he explained that it was my para-sympathetic nervous system shutting down from sensory overload. I was encountering too many burdens in the people around me for my nervous system to process, turn into prayer for the people and then off load them to Jesus. Too many burdens coming too fast for my nervous system to process!
I think that is exactly what was happening with Peter and John. They were with Jesus as He was taking on the sins of the world—the past, present and future. The force of the burdens coming upon Him at that time would have overloaded anyone’s nervous system! It was so powerful it actually made Jesus sweat blood. That is serious pressure.
Remember that I didn’t have to touch anyone, be praying for them or anything—just be in the vicinity and I would begin to experience sensory overload and yawn. Peter and John were Jesus closest friends and in the vicinity of unimaginable pain, trouble, turmoil, despair…they were human beings with finite capacity--no wonder they were out cold.
I have much more respect for these rugged pioneers of our faith. I also want to refrain from even thinking or acting like, “Come on, boys. All He’s asking is an hour…” There is a bit of rebuke in that and I do not want to judge, not even a little bit!
Has Holy Spirit put things you know together in ways you have not thought about before? I’d love for you to share so we can all be uplifted. Just drop your "aha" in the comment box.
Carol...shedding a little light