Several months ago we began a series on Abiding. It all began one fateful day in July… read the first post here. It has been an interesting journey of random moments, some intensely vulnerable. But that is the beauty of God, its vulnerable. And abiding with Him will require you to stand open and naked in the very moment you most want to hide.
Here are some glimpses into my abide moments that have been captured in a snapshot. Of course there is a story behind each picture – but what I most want to share is not the story of the moment, but of who was there with me. I was vulnerable – hurting sometimes – but He never shied away, He also never let me slip into the shadows. Abiding isn’t about scripture memorization or a voice to sing. It isn’t about hanging out at church or only having Christian friends. It isn’t Bible Study or Christian music. Abiding is recognition. Recognizing that you are in relationship with the Almighty God.
The lies, the distractions, the pain, the hard steps, the joy, the laughter, the process, the fears, the big growth moments, and the little seemingly meaningless ones, they are all shared with the sovereign Love of Holiness.
Yes, I doubted too. I doubted I’d really see Him and I doubted this crazy project would amount to much. A simple prayer asking Him to walk through unbelief with me gave me the next step and the next until I was able to see Him standing there in the messy and hard moments. Those very moments used to be about me proving I had faith. I was wrong. These moments are about vulnerability of faith, strengthening the very connection I have with my heavenly Father. That is abiding.
I first had to recognize where I was tempted to leave the truth. At first it was awkward but do it a couple of times and you just might be amazed. Imagine your attitudes or thoughts in a picture on your phone – then ask God to show you where He is in that particular scene. Now listen: He whispers with love, He gently nudges with grace, He ever so sweetly soothes with peace. The more you practice, the easier it will be to find Him. Test Him in this, trust me. You will find a freedom you never knew you were missing.
“Test me in this”, says the Lord Almighty, “and see if I will not throw open the floodgates of heaven and pour out so much blessing.” Malachi 3:10b
“If you abide in my word… you will know the truth and the truth will set you free.” John 8:31 (paraphrase mine)