Remain

Thoughts at 2:08 a.m.

When all is said and done, who I am in Christ is all that remains. . .

I must risk everything I used to hold on to if I am to hold on to Christ alone and enter into His rest.

“So there remains a Sabbath rest for the people of God.  For the one who has entered His rest has himself also rested from his works, as God did from His.

“Therefore let us be diligent to enter that rest,

so that no one will fall through following the same example of disobedience [as some of the Israelites did].  For the word of God is living and active and sharper than any two-edged sword, and piercing as far as the division of soul and spirit, of both joints and marrow, and able to judge the thoughts and intentions of the heart.  And there is no creature hidden from His sight, but all things are open and laid bare to the eyes of Him with whom we have to do.

“Therefore, since we have such a great high priest who has passed through the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast our confession.  For we do not have a high priest who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but One who has been tempted in all things as we are, yet without sin.

“Therefore let us draw near with confidence to the throne of grace, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need.”

–Hebrews 4:9-16

We learn about who God is from His works, but God is not His work.  Neither am I.  Nor am I my failings or successes.  I am not my weaknesses or strengths.  I am more than my shortcomings or triumphs.  I am more than my works.  I am more than what I do, whether poorly or well.

When everything is gone, I in Christ remain.  And no matter what life brings or fails to, no matter my points of weakness or strength, no matter when I get it right or fall horribly flat in front of all to see, if I remain in Him and He in me, I will have everything Life has to give.

“I [Jesus] am the true vine, and my Father is the vine dresser.  Every branch in Me that does not bear fruit, He takes away; and every branch that bears fruit, He prunes it so that it may bear more fruit.  You are already clean because of the word which I have spoken to you.

“Abide in Me, and I in you.  As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself unless it abides in the vine, so neither can you unless you abide in Me.  I am the vine, you are the branches; he who abides in Me and I in him, he bears much fruit, for apart from Me you can do nothing.

“If anyone does not abide in Me, he is thrown away as a branch and dries up; and they gather them, and cast them into the fire and they are burned. If you abide in Me, and My words abide in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you.  My Father is glorified by this, that you bear much fruit, and so prove to be My disciples.

“Just as the Father has loved Me, I have also loved you; abide in My love.  If you keep My commandments, you will abide in My love; just as I have kept My Father’s commandments and abide in His love.

“These things I have spoken to You so that My joy may be in you, and that your joy may be full. . . You did not choose Me but I chose you, and appointed you that you would go and bear fruit, and that your fruit would remain, so that whatever you ask of the Father in My name He may give to you.”

– John 15:1-10, 16

If I remain in Him, I will have everything. . . I will have life abundantly and joy that no one can take away.  I will be free from fear and healed of hurt and completely alive in Christ.  My body will be restored, my mind made new, and my heart of stone replaced with a heart of flesh.  If I remain in Him, I will have Jesus, and He will have me and never let go.  He will take me to worlds unknown and places of adventure and beauty.  He will cause my heart to soar and my work to have true meaning and significance.  He will guide me by His Spirit and lead me in His truth and the plans He has prepared for me.

If I let go. . .

If I remain in Him. . .

If I trust His faithfulness. . .

If I humbly accept my weakness and my need. . .

If I wholeheartedly accept His gracious strength. . .

then. . .

Sheree-in-Christ will remain.

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