This is going to be a little heart to heart.
I feel like lately I have not really had the chance to writefrom my heart for many different reasons. Maybe a part of it I was avoiding.You know, it is so much easier to just write about surface things because thenyou don’t have to dig deep and see what comes out. It’s easy and it’scomfortable.
God has been doing so much in my life. I have really beenchallenged lately in my personal relationship with Christ. I am a part of theweekly scripture memory group, and 2 weeks ago I believe it was, we were givenJohn 15:5 to memorize.
“I am the vine; youare the branches. If a man remains in me and I in him, he will bear much fruit;apart from me you can do nothing.”
No this was not the first time I read this scripture nor wasit the first time I set out to hide it in my heart. This one always gets meright between the eyes, because I am a do-er. I like to stay busy and get lotsof things done. It makes me feel accomplished and energizes me. It also allowsme to feel accomplished even when other areas of my life are being ignored,because hey, I am busy, I am doing things, good things. There’s no time to sitand do a personal and spiritual examination to see where I’m at, I am too busyhelping other people. The part of the verse that says “apart from me you can donothing,” has always been the part of this verse that has hit home and been ahuge challenge for me to rely on God rather than what I feel like I can do onmy own. But this time this verse has rocked me in a different way. It says, “Ifa man remains in me and I in him…” The King James Version says it moreexpressly by saying, “If a man abides in me and I in him…” I decided to get areal understanding of what it means and what it looks like to abide in Christ.I looked up abide in the dictionary and abide means to dwell in or live in.Wow. I have been trying to see what that looks like in my life now; what itlooks like to live in Christ and allow him to live in me. You see Jesus could havesaid “he who abides with me,” but hedidn’t. He said “abides in me.” Thatis so much more intimate and intense than just living with someone. That meansthey are in you, they are a part of you, and what’s more is that you are a partof him, you are a part of Christ.
As I have been striving to abide or remain in Christ I haverealized how much more intimate it is. That kind of a relationship doesn’t havean on/off switch or a high/medium/low dial. The Lord has been showing me areasof my life that he wants to fix and refine; uncomfortable places; places that Iwould rather be buried and left alone, but none the less Jesus is a fixer and ahealer. When the Lord started showing me what he wanted to work with me onguess what the first thing I tried to do was? Yup, back away, but not all thatslowly. When Jesus said, “here, let’s work on this,” I was saying, “No! Wedon’t need to work on that, I am fine, “that” is not a problem anymore.Remember? We already worked through that.” But the truth is, the deeper you gowith God, the deeper the healing goes as well. Thank you Jesus!
Areas that I thought were all patched up and mended, God isshowing me he is just getting started. Through this experience I realizedsomething that is strange to me. Why is it when Jesus starts fixing the thingsthat need to be fixed in our lives, we run and hide? We are running from a Godwho is everywhere and hiding from a God who is all knowing. Real smart. Irealized that we are only doing what is in our human nature, to run and hide. Imean look at the first man and women. They were so close with God; they walkedwith him, they talked with him, they had an intimate relationship with God. Butwhen it came time for their sin to be exposed what did they do? They ran andhid from God. Apple doesn’t fall far from the tree, huh? (pun intended) We maynot be running because our sin is exposed, but more because we are exposed. Iknow that’s how I felt when Jesus showed me I still needed healing and freedomfrom something I know I have come a loooong way on, but he promises to completethe work that he has started.
This is a challenge to myself and to you today, abide inGod, remain in God. Go deep with God. He will expose things in your life thatneeds to change. Things he wants to cleanse you of, free you of, and heal youof, but let him do it. Don’t run and hide, rather run into his arms.