Each person seemed to meditate on different things in the quiet of Gethsemane two weeks ago. For fifteen minutes, I seemed to reflect on the old olive trees. What makes these olive trees significant among the thousands that are scattered all over Isreal and the Mount of Olives? Are they the oldest trees surviving? Are they the biggest? Many sites seemed to claim significance by virtue of claims to the first, the biggest, the highest, the lowest, the oldest, etc. But it occurred to me that these olive trees derive their significance only by virtue of what happened there and Who did it. This is where Jesus asked the Father if there was any other way, please make it so. And the Father said, “No, this is possible.” As my friends Al and Dolores shared later, the Father said “No, because this is the only way Al and Dolores can have eternal life.” That historical event makes all the details of this place significant. (The Garden of Gethsemane is just to the left of the Russian Church, the top of the Mount of Olives being on the right) I wrote in my journal:
I am an olive tree. What is happening with me and Who is doing it? My significance is determined by the extent to which Jesus abides in me and what He does with me while He abides. I’m not a whole lot different from millions of other olive trees, but I can be a very special one to the extent to which the Lord Jesus moves through me in modern historical events.
The overarching residue from this entire trip was that everything, the Sea of Galiliee, the cities, the rocks and their ruins, and even the climate, all derived their significance by what took place there and who did it.