Abide in Jesus

When I say “abide in Jesus” what do you hear?
What do those three words mean to you?

Prior to this week, I would have thought that it simply meant read your bible. But today I see those words for what they truly mean- live in the will and way of the Lord.

I had a week. It wasn’t a bad week, but it was one of those weeks where you beg for Friday to come and save you from the craziness of four consecutive Mondays. I work at a middle school and most weeks contain four Mondays and a possible Friday- there is always something going on. Always. And this week was no different. Please understand, I am not complaining; I have learned to praise God in the valley and on the mountain top- I love my job- but this week was a lot. Maybe it’s because I spent the first half of the week gearing up to share my story with a group of 8th grade girls, or maybe it’s because I spent the second half of the week ensuring that those same girls were ok, but this week had its moments. But of all that happened this week, Wednesday stands out the most to me.

I am one of several mentors for a group of girls at the middle school where I work and, with this month being Sexual Assault Awareness and Prevention Month, we decided that it would be a great idea for me to share my story with the students. Leading up to Wednesday, I solicited prayers from friends and family, knowing that the talk would NOT be easy for them… but also knowing that God has never allowed me to share my story without at least one person saying #MeToo. And sure as I knew, Wednesday was no different. As vain or selfish as it may sound, I hate it when girls can relate to my story. It breaks my heart and sends me into tears that only God can console.

Why, God? Why did it happen to them?
Why couldn’t it just be me?
Why did they have to endure pain?

I ask every time and every time His answer is the same:
I know the plans that I have for their lives. Plans for their good, not their bad; plans for hope and a future.

And He silences me every time.
He knows what He is doing. Even if I do not understand, He does and I must trust Him.

I know that it is hard to understand why children suffer and ensure such pain. I know it’s hard to believe in or trust a good God when bad things happen, but that’s when you must know His Son in order to understand that He never intended for us to live in pain. Knowing His Word and abiding in His Son causes us to know the truth… and the truth sets us free.

So, as I’m sharing my story with these girls I get a text from my sister that catches me off guard, while also causing me to chuckle a bit.

“Your electricity is off at the house and it can’t be turned back on until tomorrow.”

To understand why I laughed, I must explain how my morning began. I sat at the dining room table that day and read through my bible study lesson. (You know, the one from that class that I had quit a few weeks ago… only to rejoin 6 days later. Yeah, that bible study class; I was reading my daily lesson for that class.) In the middle of the lesson there was one part that said, “stop and pray, thanking God for all of your blessings.” I offered the customary thanks- you know, “thank You for the roof over my head, food on the table, clothes on my back, bed to sleep in” etc., etc. … but when that text came through, I realized that I never thanked God for the electricity that powers my day. I chuckled, too, because I recalled to old line that says, “what if you woke up tomorrow with only the things you thanked God for today?” I never thank God for electricity. I never thank Him for fresh, running water. I never thank Him for gas. Things that I took for granted until I saw that text from my sister.

But I will be honest, for a split second fear and worry set in.

I’m vegan.
I had just purchased groceries.
The entire house is electric- how will I take a shower?
If I can’t take a full shower, then I can’t sleep in my bed because I HAVE to be clean before I get in the bed due to my allergies.
What about my devices? How will I charge them?

And just as quickly as those thoughts came, God assuaged my worry and reminded me that He was God. He told me that He would handle it all. So I wiped worry aside, held on to Matthew 6:33, and pressed through the meeting with the girls.

As the girls began to open up, sharing their own horror stories, I sat and prayed. One girl in particular let out a painful scream and cry as she gave words to the horror that she was currently living. I rushed to her and covered her with love, light, and prayer… and then I called all the girls to the floor. Once on the floor, I did what God had told me to do from the beginning- sit in a circle and let the girls feel the strength of their unified presence.

We did.
And they did.
And it was powerful.

When I got home that evening I realized that even with the loss of electricity, God had provided for me. In the silence of my home I was able to concentrate on fellowship with Him. He provided enough heat for me to take a shower so that I would be clean and could sleep in my bed. He had sustained all the food in the refrigerator. And, through the power of a charged Chromebook, He allowed me to charge my cell phone. He really had provided for my earthly needs. But what I loved the most was how He had provided enough sunlight for me to finish my lesson on abiding in Him. I sat, just like I am right now- on my yoga ball in front of open blinds, taking in the sights and sun- reading the words of the lesson. The lesson talked about having a heart of thankfulness and how that comes from abiding in Jesus.

I realized that even in this, God had supplied my every need.
My heart was full.
My love for God had filled me completely.

On Thursday I woke up. I can stop and shout right there. God woke me up! But not only did He wake me up, He let me wake up with a heart and mind to go to the gym… so I did. After my workout I went to Wawa for hot water so that I could have my tea and then I went home to get ready for work. Funny, with no electricity, I completed my morning routine with no distractions and in much less time. I got dressed, ate a banana (thank You, Lord, for food… and food that didn’t require electricity!), and then scurried to work. I was early so I prepped a bit before running to Walmart for snacks for my Yearbook Committee meeting and then I went to pick up the high school student that I take to school every morning. Even funnier, I was more productive on this one day than I am on any normal day. Hmm, that’s just how my God works!

Electricity was eventually restored to my house… and God had spared every thing that was in the fridge. The entire experience was humbling, to say the least, but I learned one big thing- I learned to abide in Jesus. You see, that week’s lesson caused me to be intentional about my fellowship with God. It caused me to take the scriptures that God had given me in His Word and apply them to my life. In the moments when I had no music or sounds to get through the night, God had spoken to my heart and caused me to hide His words there. Once hidden, my mind was able to recall His words, allowing me to press through everything that was going on. I had learned last week’s lesson of abiding in Christ by actually abiding in Him. The words of the text came to life in my heart and in my life. The words were no longer random words in a book, they were now life-changing and soul-saving words. I found life in the truth that Jesus is the vine and I am the branches; if I abide in Him, and He in me, I will bear much fruit (show evidence); for without Him I can do nothing. (John 15:5).

I had lived it.
My heart learned it.
I was abiding in Jesus.

I end this #MondayMessage the way that I began, praying that your answer is a bit different now.

When I say “abide in Jesus” what do you hear?
What do those three words mean to you?

Meditate on His Word.
That is how you will know His will for your life.
That is how you abide in Him.
His Word is the truth and it will set you free.

Be blessed.

6 Replies to “Abide in Jesus”

  1. Hi, God bless you for the work you are doing. There’s a place you have said: “I HAVE to be clean before I get in the bed due to my allergies.” I just feel you shouldn’t own the allergies. Words have power. When we accept certain diseases or situations, they become part of us and never leave. I pray that God will heal whatever has been giving you allergic reactions. By His stripes may you be healed. He came so that you and I may have life, and have it in abundance. You might think of reading this https://miraclesfromheavene.wordpress.com/2018/05/23/the-power-of-words/
    God bless you

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you so much; you are right!

      When I moved to Frederick, Maryland I developed allergies that I never had before. At first, I allowed the allergies to limit me in many ways because they are indoor, outdoor, and food related. Now I do not let them stop me… however, I cannot carry the allergens of the day to bed with me (hence the shower). I have really bad physical reactions to 95% of what I encounter on a daily basis but, with God, I continue to go out and do what I need to do. I’m allergic to grass, but I still photograph in nature. I’m allergic to certain pets, but I still enter homes to minister to others. I recognize that my allergies are a thorn that God has given me to endure because His grace is sufficient. I stopped taking traditional medicine for it because my allergies have no power over me, but I am still cautious and mindful of what God has given me to bear.

      Thank you again!


      1. You are welcome. I’ll keep praying for you. The fact that you don’t allow them to limit you is very powerful. I trust God will completely suppress the reactions one day. Have a blessed time and keep doing God’s work . Thank you.

        Liked by 1 person

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