Abiding in the Vine
February 7, 2020
February 7, 2020
by Mac Hammond
Let me ask you this question. Have you ever looked at other believers and longed to have the kind of relationship with God that they have?
You’ve noticed their relationship with God seems to be much more intimate, they consistently experience the supernatural power of God, and it appears they always get their prayers answered.
Maybe you’ve wondered, Why doesn’t God minister to me like that? Is He a respecter of persons?
No, God is not a respecter of persons. In fact, He longs to have the same kind of intimacy with you as He does them. The only difference between you and them is that they’ve learned what it takes to have more of God.
What is it that they’ve learned? Look at John 15:5-8:
I am the vine, you are the branches. He who abides in Me, and I in him, bears much fruit; for without Me you can do nothing. … If you abide in Me, and My words abide in you, you will ask what you desire, and it shall be done for you. By this My Father is glorified, that you bear much fruit….
They’ve learned the importance of “abiding in the vine.” It is the key to positioning yourself to have more of God.
What does it mean to abide? First, let’s talk about what it doesn’t mean. It doesn’t mean visiting with the Lord once a week at church on Sundays. And it doesn’t mean throwing up a five- or ten-minute prayer in the morning before you go to work.
The word “abide” means: to remain, to tarry or sojourn, or to wait. I like the way one translation puts it: “maintain a living communion with Him.”
Of course, the most obvious means of maintaining a living communion with the Lord is by having regular and consistent times of prayer and Bible study. The term “maintain a living communion” suggests a relationship with God that is ongoing throughout your day.
I can hear your thoughts, How is it possible to commune with the Lord throughout my day?
You do it by cultivating a conscious awareness of His abiding presence. From the rising of the sun to the time that it goes down, you should be aware of God’s presence in your life.
This begins by renewing your mind to the fact that He never leaves you nor forsakes you. The precious promise is clearly revealed in God’s Word. Yet for many of us, as soon as we are done with our morning devotions, we never have another thought about the Lord for the rest of the day!
I have a challenge for you. Tomorrow morning when you begin your day, make a decision that you are going to cultivate an awareness of God’s presence throughout the day.
The Greek word for communion is koinonia and it simply means ”fellowship.” And fellowship simply means to communicate. So to have a living communion with God means we must learn to fellowship or communicate with Him throughout our day.
For instance, if you’re faced with a problem or a decision you have to make, talk to the Lord about it first before you turn to your coworkers, your parents, or your boss.
When you’re driving down the road and you see a beautiful sunset, share it with the Lord. Say, “Lord, isn’t that gorgeous?”
When you’re in a conversation with someone, be aware of the fact that God might want to use you to minister His truth to them or use them to minister favor to you.
The point I’m trying to make is that in order to cultivate an awareness of God, you must keep God in the forefront of your thinking. Don’t relegate Him to the back recesses of your mind.
When you do, guess what the result will be? You will “bear much fruit.” It’s true!
Keeping the Lord in the forefront of your thinking, will keep you from blowing your temper and spouting off at somebody. It’ll keep you from acting ugly. It will position you to receive increase. What’s more, you’ll begin to display the fruits of the Spirit as listed in the book of Galatians.
On top of that, when you maintain a living communion with the Lord, something much more significant will happen. You’ll begin to notice an increase in your hunger for God!
And when you’re hungry for God, you’ll spend even more time abiding in the vine. The result? Your relationship with God will become more intimate, you’ll begin to experience the supernatural power of God, and you will begin having maximum impact for good on those around you!