Living & Abiding
A few years ago, I jumped on the bandwagon of these nifty little fitness trackers, starting first with the Jawbone Up App, then moving onto the FitBit. I found my competitive nature enough to stir me up to achieve my goal everyday, typically even surpassing it. I lost a lot of weight, I felt great, and it was all worth the while. But as a couple years passed by and it seemed all was well with my fitness goals, my esteem for the fitness tracker dwindled. At first it was unnoticeable but the longer I went, the more I noticed the effects of being away from it.
In John 8:31-32 (NKJV), Jesus said, “If you abide in My word, you are My disciples indeed. And you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.” A FitBit only works when it’s actually used, when someone actually makes lifestyle choices in line with its guidance. Likewise, the Word of God only works if you work in line with it, meaning if you actually make lifestyle choices in line with His guidance. A person can’t get mad at the FitBit that they stopped paying attention to when their weight comes back. A person can’t get mad at the Word of God when they aren’t seeing the blessings promised within it, if they’re not abiding in and living according to it.
To abide means to stay, to dwell, to continue in. If you continue in the Word of God you will have the truth operating in your life. If you have the truth operating in your life it means you live in truth, you walk in truth, and truth guides everything you do. That truth leads to complete freedom from sin and from anything that will try to keep you under in this life. Unfortunately, often times Christians will get the result they were looking for whether it was healing or a spouse or a job, and then as time passes they forget the success they’ve had and revert back to their old ways of doing things. When we revert to our old lifestyle, we won’t have the benefits of that new life.
My fitness tracker tells me I should walk. Do I walk? My fitness tracker tells me I need to drink more water, do I do it? My fitness tracker tells me I’m not sleeping enough, do I go to bed a little earlier? We’re not just talking about fitness trackers, but about keeping track of whether or not we are abiding in the Word of God.
The Word says to come to church, not forsaking the assembling together of the brethren (Hebrews 10:25). Do I actually make that a priority in my life? The Word says to make your requests known to God, to pray to Him, to fellowship with Him (Phil. 4:6). Do I actually spend time doing it? The Word says I should be tithing (Malachi 3:10) and giving, putting the kingdom of God first, not worrying about my own things (Matthew 6:33). Am I always focused on me and mine? The Word says to speak to the mountains in my life, by faith, and they will move (Mark 11:23)! Am I actually using my faith and my authority in my everyday life or am I living defeated?
See the FitBit will track my physical fitness, but if I don’t pay attention to it and actually try to live in line with it, it’s not tracking my success, it’s tracking my failure. Likewise, the Word of God will track our spiritual success in this life, but if we’re not living and abiding in it, it’s not tracking our success, it’s tracking our failure. Let’s not live apart from the Word. Let’s let the Word dwell in us richly. Let’s let the Word be our guide. Amen!?