by M. Jolaine Szymkowiak

Abide with Me
M. Jolaine Szymkowiak
John 15:4-11; John 14:16-23

When first reading this scripture, I said, "Oh, yes, I can do that, that will be easy . . . probably will. . . um . . . I wonder what "Abide with me" really means. Abide with me - what does it mean for me?"

Webster's dictionary defines abide as "to remain, to reside, to live up to a promise, to submit to and carry out;" with as "near to, alongside, in the company of, in the keeping or care of, to join as with the other."

Wow, this phrase means more than I thought. Jesus is asking me to remain steadfast, committing my life to His keeping, not mine. Then living up to the commitment, I am to submit my will to His, carrying out His will in obedience to Him.

If I do the abiding, He will come alongside and will be close at hand. I will be in the keeping and care of Jesus Christ. Since I am in His keeping, I can give Him my cares and anxieties, knowing He will take care of them and me. We are as one, joined one to another. Jesus knows about those things that affect me. He knows of my conflicts and also my joys. If I am abiding in Jesus, I can know those cares will be taken care of – I will know what steps to take. As I submit my will to His, I will be able to follow through with the right decision or method of action. And those joys? They will be joy bubbling up to overflowing in praise and worship to Him.

This is what it means in the "what's in it for me" culture. However, it goes far beyond this. The benefit of abiding with Jesus far outweighs whatever cost there is on my part to submit and give Him control of my life; to be obedient in prayer, study, and as situations present themselves, to tell others of Christ and/or be an example.

If I abide in Him, He will abide in me. I make the commitment, He provides the promise and gives the strength and grace to carry out that commitment. I am in the company of the Holy Spirit as He gives the Spirit in the keeping and care of ...

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