LEARNING HOW TO ABIDE

BY: Harold Moreland

I have been a Christian now for 36 years, and in that time I have definitely fluctuated when it comes to "abiding in Christ". Now at the age of 56, I feel that God has taught me much about "abiding" in Him. Contentment is the key to knowing where you are in this whole "abiding" process. And I say "process" because true abiding does not come naturally or without knowledge and understanding. Zeal does not equate to abiding, ministry does not equate to abiding, evangelism does not equate to abiding, nor does prayer equate to abiding. Rather it takes perseverance, patience, and maturity to gain ground in this "abiding process". It also takes "balance", and balance comes only through time.

So am I saying that a new Believer cannot "abide", no, but it's kind of like an infant abiding in the care and arms of it's mother, with all confidence and simple trust, and with no mindset to wander from it's mothers care. Then as that infant grows, to abide becomes a choice, and therein is the rub!! "Choice", in spite of affliction, in spite of obstacles, and in spite of our own inner-struggles of right and wrong. As we mature in Christ and our walk with The Ancient of Days matures, we learn perseverance and we learn (most of the time the hard way) to simply "abide", to "rest", and to "partner" with the One in whom we abide.

So Beloved, learn to rest as you grow in all knowledge and understanding of how basically incapable we are to stand on our own. Resist the temptation to ever come to the "I have arrived" viewpoint. As our brother and Apostle once said in his letter to the Philippians, "Not that I have already obtained it or have already become perfect, but I press on so that I may lay hold of that for which also I was laid hold of by Christ Jesus. Brethren, I do not regard myself as having laid hold of it yet; but one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and reaching forward to what lies ahead, I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.…" (Philippians 3:12-14)

In summary, to really learn to abide, just keep-on-keeping-on and never give up, then He will do the rest. Yes, it's that simple.

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