I had the opportunity to go on a great retreat this past weekend held by the Tarrant Baptist Association. It was called “Hearing God” and it was wonderful! I walked into this retreat feeling overwhelmed, tired, stressed, and just needing to have some questions and worries and fears addressed by Jesus. Preparing to head to Africa is a hard business…who would’ve thought! 🙂 Lately, my thoughts are constantly drawn to the to-do list, the countdown, the things I am trying to juggle on my own. I went in with great expectation and excitement to really hear from Him and spend time reflecting on His goodness.
As I said, I had many things I wanted to hear from God about. And, man, I really did on a lot of things. But, you know what I really walked away with? A greater love for Jesus. I fell more in love with Him this past weekend. And that one thing puts everything else into perspective. I was reminded of the beautiful hymn “Turn Your Eyes Upon Jesus:”
What a time of refocusing it was for me! When you are focused on Jesus, it truly puts all the other “stuff” into perspective. During my time alone, I really camped out in John 15:1-17 where Jesus calls us to abide in Him. I really looked at what that word “abide” means in our lives. When you look it up you get phrases like: to stay, remain, continue, to remain stable, fixed, patiently enduring and bearing.This is what Jesus calls us to do:
Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit by itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can you, unless you abide in me. I am the vine; you are the branches. Whoever abides in me and I in him, he it is that bears much fruit, for apart from me you can do nothing. (John 15:4-5 ESV)
As the Father has loved me, so have I loved you. Abide in my love. 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. These things I have spoken to you, that my joy may be in you, and that your joy may be full. (John 15:9-11 ESV)
I want to ABIDE with Him and in His love each and every day. I want to connect with Him thru His Word daily. I want to keep His commandments. I want to consciously talk to Him in prayer and be so in tune with Him that I hear His voice among all the other “voices” of this world. In the calm and restful days I want to abide. In the confusing and stressful days I want to abide. In the exciting, unknown, and question-filled days I want to abide. For all the days of my life, I want to ABIDE in Him. Because when I am truly focused on Him…the things, stresses, worries of this world really do grow strangely dim.
Hope you are abiding in Him today,