31 To the Jews who had believed him, Jesus said, “If you hold to my teaching, you are really my disciples. 32 Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.” John 8:31-32 NIV
Albert Einstein, in his theory of relativity, explained how gravity is more than a force: it forms a curvature in the space-time continuum. This sounds like something from an episode of Star Trek or a Star Wars movie; however, the space around the mass of any object bends and curves. This is often represented as a heavy ball on a rubber sheet, and it causes other smaller balls to fall in towards the heavier object.
Although we can’t see curvature of space directly, we can notice it in the motions of objects. “Any object ‘caught’ in another celestial body’s gravity is affected because the space it is moving through is curved toward that object. It is similar to the way a coin would spiral down one of those penny slot cyclone machines you see at tourist shops.” (Universe Today)
In a similar way, Jesus is calling us to be caught up in Him. To abide is to live in a close relationship with the Lord, His Son, and His Spirit. Christ followers curve their actions, believes, dreams, hopes, and thoughts toward the Highest God. We also must obey His word and hold on to the truth. There is no such thing as cheap or easy grace. Jesus did not die on the cross for us to be comfortable and free of commitment.
24 Then Jesus said to his disciples, “Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross and follow me. Matthew 16:24 NIV
Psalm 23 describes how we abide with our Good Shepherd. He leads us, comforts us, invites us, and strengthens us. Take time to imagine how we will abide with Him forever. How blessed we are to be called to the Lord’s banqueting table.
Andrew Murray wrote a short, profound book called Abide in Christ. I recommend it to anyone who wants a closer walk with Christ. Murray invited us:
“Come, my brethren, and let us day by day set ourselves at His feet, and meditate on this word of His, with an eye fixed on Him alone. Let us set ourselves in quiet trust before Him, waiting to hear His holy voice–the still small voice that is mightier than the storm that rends the rocks–breathing its quickening spirit within us, as He speaks: “Abide in me.” The soul that truly hears Jesus Himself speak the word, receives with the word the power to accept and to hold the blessing He offers.”
Not only does Jesus abide with us, the Holy Spirit indwells and fills us. Not only are we abiding with the Triune God: The Advocate enlightens and empowers us. The Shepherd holds us in His hand; He is the vine and we are the branches. We are drawn into a walk with the Creator, Liberator, and Protector. The Chain Breaker lifts us up when we fall and loves us beyond words can express.
Prayer: With unbroken praise we lift up the mighty name of Jesus. Father, thank you for allowing us to abide in You. Thank you Spirit for abiding in us. Nothing in this life compares to the surpassing greatness of knowing you. In the eternal name of Jesus we pray. Amen.