…but whoever keeps His word, in him the love of God has truly been perfected. By this we know that we are in Him: the one who says he ABIDES in Him ought himself to walk in the same manner as He walked. Beloved, I am not writing a new commandment to you, but an old commandment which you have had from the beginning; the old commandment is the word which you have heard. On the other hand, I am writing a new commandment to you, which is true in Him and in you, because the darkness is passing away and the true light is already shining.
1 John 2:5-8 NASB
Did you notice our new Women’s Ministry logo? Abide * Remain * Overflow –Philippians 1
We launched the new theme at Fall Kickoff this September. We are excited to explore the Scriptures together. We will visit some Old Testament and New Testament passages on the first topic of ABIDE throughout this year. So, you will need to know some of expanded definitions behind the word. The definitions of the Greek words for ABIDE are: to continue to be present, to stay, and to be held. For your further interest, the Hebrew words for ABIDE are: to tent, to dwell, to lodge, to wait in, and to stand fast.
Let’s be honest. Most of that sounds like it will entail some work! Abiding is work and it is hard! If we acknowledge the part of the heart that resists this work, then we can be truth-tellers when we are struggling. We can confess to God, “I am not searching for you, Lord. I am finding other things to occupy my time. I am filling my wells and desires with things that are not of you. My time is short, Lord. Help me! Abide in me and I in You!”
We can learn how to ABIDE by taking a closer look at the expanded definitions. If we can “continue to be present” with the Lord in everything, we will gain conviction when we are out of His will. If we “stay” with Him during tough decisions, we will gain insight to make the right choice in those decisions. If we are “held” by Him, we know Him better and can better reflect His character.
The part of these verses that stands out to me the most are the words: “which is true in him and in you.” What is new about this commandment is that God is now in US! If we believe in Christ, we have the Holy Spirit within us. The Abider is actually in our hearts. We have to acknowledge Him and invite Him to illuminate Himself and be open to hearing His voice.
The concept of ABIDING is not new. Its old. But the new truth is that abiding allows God’s light to shine through you. When we choose to ABIDE, it is a commitment that we can’t keep in our flesh and we can’t do in our own strength. We can only do it in His power. We have to be diligent and seek Him. But, if we are careful with that practice, the fruit becomes the light of Christ shining through. The fruit becomes a connection that stays strong. You can run up against crashing waves and bumps in the road but you can withstand the waves and keep your feet upon the Rock where you built your house. That becomes your dwelling place…in Him! May His love be perfected in you as you ABIDE.
Today’s truth: The things of this world are growing dim but those who ABIDE in Him will last for eternity!
Our Prayer: Lord, Jesus, help us to see this truth and grasp what you are sharing with us through the enlightening of our eyes through the Holy Spirit. Help us practice abiding. Help us remember to create space for you. Help us to lay down distractions and keep the peaceful act of abiding with you. Amen!
Abide and Remain (so that) OVERFLOW,