Please allow me to reflect a little bit today. In the midst of so much activity and busyness, I’m feeling the need to slow down. These past few months (ok the past year) has been a flurry of activity. Normally I’m someone who loves having my to-do list and checking things off as they get done. However, as I’ve experienced an increase in stress, weariness, etc…I’ve been reminded that I have not been doing a very good job at connecting to the source of life. The word that has been resounding in my mind the past couple of days has been “abide.”


Grapes on the vine


I’ve always loved the imagery of grapes on the vine in John 15. There is something so beautiful about seeing a vine filled with grapes hanging from its branches, ready for harvesting. To me it’s a symbol of life, of abundance. In John 15 we are reminded that God is the vine and we are the branches. It is God who produces “fruit” in and through us. On Sunday, my pastor preached on “going deep” and what transformation looks like and how it happens. I was reminded that it doesn’t happen by me trying harder, but that God brings about transformation as I “abide” in God, “remain” in God, “make my home” in God.

Verses 9-11 have really spoken to me:  “As the Father has loved me, so have I loved you. Now remain in my love. If you keep my commands, you will remain in my love, just as I have kept my Father’s commands and remain in his love. I have told you this so that my joy may be in you and that your joy may be complete.” First, I think about the love that God the Father has for Jesus, and the fact that I am a recipient of that same kind of love. Amazing! So impossible to comprehend! Does it get any better? So, what does it look like to “remain” in God’s love?  How different would my life, actions, thoughts be if I abided in God’s love? Imagine the promise that joy would be complete! Again, I think of the image of the vine and the branches and the bunches of grapes, so ripe they are ready to burst. I am challenged to root myself in God in this busy season of my life, knowing that when we get to Colombia life will not slow down. Abide, remain in, make myself at home – in God’s love.

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