“I am the true vine, and my Father is the vineyard keeper. 2 He removes any of my branches that don’t produce fruit, and he trims any branch that produces fruit so that it will produce even more fruit. 3 You are already trimmed because of the word I have spoken to you. 4 Remain in me, and I will remain in you. John 15:1-4, CEB
9 “As the Father loved me, I too have loved you. Remain in my love. 10 If you keep my commandments, you will remain in my love, just as I kept my Father’s commandments and remain in his love. 11 I have said these things to you so that my joy will be in you and your joy will be complete. 12 This is my commandment: love each other just as I have loved you. John 15:9-12, CEB
What does remaining (or abiding) in God look like?
Yesterday we talked about some informal ways in which we can learn to abide with each other. There are also some more formal ways in which we can abide as well.
Joining together in spiritual acts of worship are just as important as any of our other options. This happens, sometimes, in music, it also happens when we join together for prayer (suffering and celebration alike), also when we take communion. But, it’s not just the act of participating in the service that counts as “abiding”. These acts have to move us to action as well. For instance, communion, above all else, reminds us of the importance of reconciliation. Abiding suggests that we seek to live in true intimacy with those around us. We need to be honest about how we experience each other and be willing to ask each other to live up to the standard of being a community who is present for each other. When we’re wrong, we promptly admit and seek reconciliation where possible.
In this way, we prove that we’re following God, abiding, and loving.