Abiding in the Flames

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How do you surrender when you want a certain outcome?

How do you submit when you don’t understand?
How do you lean in when you want to run?
How do you push on when you want to fall back?
How do you fight when you have no strength?
How do you abide in the flames?

You “consider Jesus” (Hebrews 3:1).

You set your gaze on the One who set His face toward Jerusalem when He knew death, anguish, and the forsaking of the Father awaited Him.

You hold onto the One who held our wrath and swallowed our sin.

You worship the One who was despised and rejected yet opened not His mouth.

Hear this, family: “You can make it through the furnaces of your life because Jesus took the only furnace that can really burn you” (Tim Keller).

We wade through the waters of death, despair, and depression because Jesus experienced all of that to the nth degree so we could have hope to the nth degree.

We embrace meekness and disregard pride in our virtues because the holy, holy, holy God became flesh and laid down His rights and life to buy ours.

We take courage by looking to the One who took up His cross for our salvation.

We abide in Jesus and give up wrestling for control over the vinedresser.

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What does it mean to abide?

Abide = Stay
Continue
Dwell
Endure
Be present
Remain
Stand
Tarry

“Abide in Me, Jesus tells us in John 15:4. But then He says, “…and I in you.”

What is this? He’s promised to stay, continue, dwell, endure, be present, remain, stand, and tarry in us. Amazing.

Therefore, we stand in Him because He stands in us.
We endure because He endures with us.
We remain because He remains in us.
We continue through the flames of sanctification because He continues with us.

How do we do that?

By fixing our gaze on the character of God and seeking to honor Him in this moment.

Here are some questions I’ve started asking myself to help peel my eyes off what I want, off the sometimes overwhelming big picture, and onto the Lord and the only thing I can control—my reactions to the circumstances God has ordained for my good and His glory.

The first question is from my awesome pastor. I hope these are a help to you.

Questions I’ve started asking myself to shift my gaze from self to the Savior:

What does glorifying Jesus look like right now?
What does abiding in Jesus look like right now?
What does counting it all joy look like right now?
What’s the temperature of my gratitude like right now?
What do I know is true about Jesus right now?
Am I looking at what God in His mercy has seen fit to withhold or am I looking at all He has given in Jesus?
How can I have unflinching submission to Him right now?
How can I rehearse His character right now?

“It is good for me that I was afflicted,
that I might learn Your statutes.” 
-Psalm 119:71

“He who did not spare His own Son but gave Him up for us all,
how will He not also with Him graciously give us all things?” 

-Romans 8:32

 

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5 thoughts on “Abiding in the Flames

  1. Bruce Sims says:

    Reblogged this on Call 2 Witness.

  2. Gary Fultz says:

    This is a great spring board for a small group discussion. Thanks

  3. […] things out and “understand” was bondage and a distraction from submitting to and abiding in Christ? Who knew wrestling to understand could become more of a priority than God’s […]

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