This month we’ve studied what it means to abide, why we need to abide in Jesus (who is our true vine), and we’ve looked at Mary and how she abided. Today, we’re going to look at some practical ways we can learn to abide in Jesus.
5 Ways We Can Abide in Jesus:
1. Spend time with Him.
Like Mary, we need to seek to spend time with Jesus. In order to abide in Him, He must come first in our lives. He needs to be our focus and we need to set aside time to be with Him.
One way to spend time with Jesus is to pray. 1 Thessalonians 5:17 tells us to “Pray continuously” -all the time. At first this may seem like a defeating idea; you may be thinking “there’s no way I could possibly pray all the time!”
But think about you and your best friend(s). Odds are you probably text them at various times throughout the day. Even when life gets busy, y’all still set aside time- perhaps only weekly- to catch up with one another. If y’all didn’t talk often, y’all probably wouldn’t be besties.
Same with Jesus. If we don’t talk to Jesus periodically throughout our day, we wouldn’t be as close to Him as we could be if we did. It doesn’t have to be a long phone-call-like-prayer, it could be more like short-text-message-prayers that we “send” Him throughout the day as our daily events occur.
I do think it’s important to set aside a specific time just to pray, but I also believe that in order to live out 1 Thessalonians 5:17 we need to pray throughout our day.
3. Read His Word.
That’d be the Bible :)
Pick a time of day that works for you, and consistently read the Bible. Build it into your schedule. Make it a habit.
In the past, I’ve always read the Bible at night. However, this past semester I was always EXHAUSTED by night time, and so I’d often skip reading my Bible in order to go straight to sleep. This semester I’m going to try to read my Bible in the morning.
Anna, of sheisjoyful.com, recently wrote an excellent blog post entitled “3 Reasons Why Your Quiet Time Needs to be in The Morning,” and I definitely recommend you go read that post. She even has a worksheet to help you prioritize your quiet time and you don’t wanna miss out on that! :)
Don’t know where to start reading?
John’s a great place. Or the Psalms. Or Romans.
My New Testament professor once affectionately called Mark “the gospel for people with short attention spans.” Lol! Anywho, her reasoning for that title is because Mark is the shortest gospel, and it gets to the meat of the story quickly. So if you want to read the story of Jesus, but overwhelmed by the length of it, check out Mark.
4. Join with other believers to worship Him.
“And let us not neglect our meeting together, as some people do, but encourage one another, especially now that his return is near” Hebrews 10:25 (NLT).
Meeting with other believers to encourage one another and to worship God is so important. It allows us to grow with each other and to be a part of the body of Christ.
It also protects us from becoming isolated in our faith. The enemy wants us to feel alone in our struggles and to believe no one will understand or be able to help. By meeting with other believers, we learn that we are not alone and we don’t have to face anything by ourselves.
Matthew 18:20 says “For where two or three are gathered in my name, there I will be among them.” So whenever we meet with fellow Christians to worship the Lord and learn about Him, Jesus promises to show up. I think that’s pretty cool.
5. Learn about Him.
No, don’t stalk Jesus. Don’t research Him just so you can spout off facts to look good. Get to know Jesus.
When you fall in love with someone, you want to learn all you can about that person, not because you HAVE to, but because you WANT to. You love them. You want to know their likes and dislikes and how to make them happy.
Same with us and Jesus. We should desire to learn all we can about Him because we love Him and He loves us. We can learn about Him through the Bible (see above), and through other books as well.
Check out a local Christian bookstore to find a book about Jesus that seems interesting to you. Don’t know where to start? Mere Christianity by C. S. Lewis is a great place to begin.
Question to Ponder: When are you going to next spend intentional, quality time with Jesus?
Think about your day and week ahead. Right now, plan when you are going to spend time with Jesus in prayer or in the Bible. Set a reminder on your phone if you need to. Set a time aside, and then show up and be with Jesus.