Thursday, June 1, 2017

#TWIN

from a trip to Florida

The past few months I've been working on memorizing John 14-17. {Mostly 14. I got bogged down because of traveling so much.} Every time I go through I hit 14:14-15, and have to pause a moment. 
if ye shall ask any thing in My name, I will do it.  
If ye love Me, keep My commandments.
I keep thinking about the relationship between those two verses, and their straightforwardness compared to how very complicated they seem to us as humans...and then before I know it I'm in chapter 15 and in the middle of all the abiding, and having to pause again.

Abiding is something I've thought about for sure...but it's also a concept I've had trouble grasping. Like seriously, how do you abide in Him? It's clearly central to living as His person, the concept makes sense...but HOW?

In some ways my family has always been pretty close. Every so often my mom and I will say the exact same thing at the exact same time -- it happens more often the more time we spend together, and it always sets my mom laughing. "I guess I can die now," she usually says. "I've replicated myself." 

Perhaps stranger than that is when my two closest friends and I {one of whom I see on rare, light-filled days in which sugar and sleeplessness are closely entwined, and one of whom I have not yet met in person} do the equivalent online: type the same words at the same time while chatting with each other. We call it twinning. {Hence the name of this post.} The record is perhaps 3 of the exact same responses in a row for each of us, the odds of which I don't feel like calculating. 

This happens the most when we are in sync, obviously -- when we have been spending a lot of time together, when we are most in tune with each other's thoughts and moods, when we are, to put it simply, feeling the same thing.

It was thinking about this that finally made the concept of abiding click, and with it, a lightbulb flash of understanding regarding the command to pray without ceasing.

When I go for days without truly talking to my mother or chatting/messaging/texting my closest friends, this does not mean our friendship has ceased to exist. But, it means that when we talk again it takes just that little bit longer until we reach that place of being totally in sync.  

When I go for days without real, serious prayer time, this does not mean I am not a Christian. But it means that when I next pray, it will take that much longer before I am thinking His way. Prayer is not so that God knows what is on my mind {though I think He created us and Heaven because He actually does enjoy spending time with us, mind-blowing as that thought is}. Prayer is that I can know His mind, so that I can know His heart, so much as is possible for the finite to understand the infinite. So that I can be like Him. What else is abiding, but that closeness, that oneness, that unthinking knowing where my actions, my words, my thoughts, become His? 

How do I get there? I am guessing it works with my God the way it works with my people -- which is by loving them, caring about what they care about, and discussing everything under the sun with them and snatching any moment I can to share with them. Just as simple and as difficult as that. 

I have to keep thinking about John 14...but if I put John 15 into practice, I think it will become understandable on a different level. The times when I am in sync with my people are always amazing...abiding in God the way Jesus describes in John 15? Try to imagine that. 

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