Lent 2016: This piece originally appeared in the He Reads Truth Lent Series. Along with many of their reading plans you can find it here in full.
I’ve often wondered what it means to “abide” or “remain.” It seems like such a passive role, which is what, I think, can make it feel so frustrating.
Many of us are much more comfortable striving, accomplishing, and achieving. To strive is to grab life by the horns and take control of a situation. To abide is to take a posture of rest and trust, worship and obedience.
Especially in the West, and particularly as men, we’ve had it drilled into us over and over again that prosperity and success are found by pulling ourselves up by our own bootstraps. Through books and film, we’ve found reason to praise the self-made man. However, it seems clear from Jesus’ teaching here in John that there is no such thing as a spiritually self-made man. “Apart from me you can do nothing,” Jesus says in John 15:5.
Rather than abide, oftentimes we dig deep, and push, and battle with everything we’ve got...
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