Abide – Remain in expectation, wait. Stay, remain, reside, dwell, endure, stand firm.
The word abide has an inbuilt connotation of a call to be a stable and patient person. Those two characteristics are not common virtues in our society. We live in a world of instant access and gratification. Our self-worth is damaged if we must wait. There is sense of restlessness that causes us to not want to wait or be still. Such actions are somehow a waste of time or an intrusion in our lives. The Bible, in one way or another speaks often of waiting.
So, Jesus was saying to those Jews who had believed Him, “If you continue in My word, then you are truly disciples of Mine. (John 8:31) I stress that Jesus said continue in his word. That is the key to abiding in God. We must stay with him and learn of him. Our faith journey is just that- a journey. All too often we see faith as a destination, but the only destination we have is to abide in God day by day. That requires that we learn the secret of abiding.
Abiding is long term. We all know a long-term debt takes many years to pay off. The typical home mortgage is 30 years or more. Cars are now financed for as much as 8 years. When we take on this long-term debt, we know that we must pay it regularly and be patient. Just as we enjoy the house we live in or the car we drive even though we have the debt, we can enjoy our abiding journey with God. He gives us the blessings of each day and the strength to endure the tough times. He is committed to long-term, and you should be, too.
Abiding is boring from time to time. Boredom is another great enemy of abiding in God. The blessings do not always flow down like a rushing stream. There are times when life is plain dull and slow. We are often tempted to do something to liven up our lives. Jimmy Buffet’s song, “Gypsies in the Palace,” presents a ridiculous solution to boredom when he sings,” Snake this party is getting dull, let’s throw someone in the pool.” Christians are always getting ready to throw someone in the pool when our abiding journey is getting boring. Our church is not alive, our prayers do not have the right answers. God is with us even in those boring and unexciting times. Oswald Chambers refers to the “the simple, dreary day, with its commonplace duties and people that smother the burning heart” and stresses that is the most important time to recall the abiding presence of God.
Abiding in God is a call to change. It is a call to change our expectations in life. It is a call to reevaluate our way of living. As we abide in Christ, we distance ourselves from the world. By world I mean base elements of our nature and not some strange detachment from normal life. Those who abide in him are active in life and seek to be a positive role model for the world. They can wear fashionable clothing and enjoy contemporary music but are always ready to acknowledge who they follow. That is the change- we must acknowledge him. To abide in God, we must be willing to acknowledge him to all the world. Abiding in God is not being a like member of a secret society, but it is having the sort of faith that is fully visible to the world. Most Christians tend to say that our faith is private, but it is not. A private faith is not an abiding faith, and that is the change we must embrace. We must go public.
In the words of Oswald Chambers, “There is no condition of life in which we cannot abide in Jesus.” That is our call and challenge for this day- to abide in him at all times and under all circumstances.
The more we abide in Christ, the more His grace and power transform us into His image.
~~~Lailah Gifty Akita
Abiding does not mean sitting idly by. It means resting in the work, resting in the moment, resting in the truth, resting in the confidence that God is your provision.
“There is no condition of life in which we cannot abide in Jesus. We have to learn to abide in Him wherever we are placed.
It is the simple, dreary day, with its commonplace duties and people that smothers the burning heart–unless we have learned the secret of abiding in Jesus.
You can do anything under one condition; you must continually abide in Jesus Christ
I left in love, in laughter, and in truth, and wherever truth, love and laughter abide, I am there in spirit.
Before I can live with other folks I’ve got to live with myself. The one thing that doesn’t abide by majority rule is a person’s conscience.
Time abides long enough for those who make use of it.
~~~Leonardo da Vinci
For any young democracy, the most difficult but important step is burying the legacy of tyranny and establishing an economy and a government and institutions that abide by the rule of law. Every country faces challenges to the rule of law, including my own.
Amidst the confusion of the times, the conflicts of conscience, and the turmoil of daily living, an abiding faith becomes an anchor to our lives.
~~~Thomas S. Monson
A friend is one soul abiding in two bodies.
Those who trust to chance must abide by the results of chance.
I have built you an exalted house,
a place for you to abide forever.’
~~~1 Kings 8:13
Just as the Father has loved Me, I have also loved you; abide in My love.
~~~ John 15:9
If you keep My commandments, you will abide in My love; just as I have kept My Father’s commandments and abide in His love.
Abide in Me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself unless it abides in the vine, so neither can you unless you abide in Me.
Everyone who does not abide in the teaching of Christ, but goes beyond it, does not have God; whoever abides in the teaching has both the Father and the Son.
~~~2 John 1:9
‘As for the promise which I made you when you came out of Egypt, My Spirit is abiding in your midst; do not fear!’
I am the vine, you are the branches; he who abides in Me and I in him, he bears much fruit, for apart from Me you can do nothing.
If anyone does not abide in Me, he is thrown away as a branch and dries up; and they gather them, and cast them into the fire and they are burned.
If you abide in Me, and My words abide in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you.
Behold then the kindness and severity of God; to those who fell, severity, but to you, God’s kindness, if you continue in His kindness; otherwise you also will be cut off.
Lord, I ask that you abide in me in my coming and my going, my success and failure, my good days and bad days and may you at all times know that there is a place for you in my life. Let me pause this moment and invite you in so that I may live in the blessed assurance of your abiding presence and love.