I recently attended the Sacred Gifts art exhibit at the BYU Art Museum and was really touched by this painting by Franz Schwartz called “Agony in the Garden.” I went back and saw it again a second time and continue to be mesmerized by the beautiful depiction. When I see Christ in the garden, I imagine him rent in agony and suffering. I love how Christ is obviously in the midst of prayer. I love all of the emotion and exhaustion that can be seen in his eyes. I also love how the angel comforts him, and how his wings are fully engulfing and embracing the savior.
I love the parallels between the angels comfort, and the comfort promised by the savior as he spoke out of the darkness to the mourning grieving afflicted nephites: (3 Ne 10:1-6)
2 For so great was the astonishment of the people that they did cease lamenting and howling for the loss of their kindred which had been slain; therefore there was silence in all the land for the space of many hours.
3 And it came to pass that there came a voice again unto the people, and all the people did hear, and did witness of it, saying:
4 O ye people of these great cities which have fallen, who are descendants of Jacob, yea, who are of the house of Israel, how oft have I gathered you as a hen gathereth her chickens under her wings, and have nourished you.
5 And again, how oft would I have gathered you as a hen gathereth her chickens under her wings, yea, O ye people of the house of Israel, who have fallen; yea, O ye people of the house of Israel, ye that dwell at Jerusalem, as ye that have fallen; yea, how oft would I have gathered you as a hen gathereth her chickens, and ye would not.
This is the promise offered to us by the savior. He will take us fully under his wings and comfort and nourish us if only we repent and come unto him. How fitting, that in this great moment of trial, the father would send an angel to gather the savior literally under his wings and to offer comfort and nourishment.