Monday encouragement – making ourselves at home in God’s love

“I have loved you even as the Father has loved me. Remain in my love. When you obey my commandments, you remain in my love, just as I obey my Father’s commandments and remain in his love. I have told you these things so that you will be filled with my joy. Yes, your joy will overflow! This is my commandment: Love each other in the same way I have loved you.” (John 15:9-12)

imagesTHE LIVING WORD: My writing mantra could well be, “When I don’t know where else to start, then I begin with scripture.” Sure there are a number of “go-to” prompts that generally tend to “get the ball rolling” when I’m not sure how – or where – to begin, but nothing beats simply reading the Bible and moving forward from there.

I’m careful not to simply return to the same few passages every time. Sure, I have some favorites (although the scope continues to increase, the more I study); but instead, my exposure to scripture is guided by:

  • My daily Upper Room reading and devotion;
  • The Bible Gateway “verse of the day;”
  • The current daily meditation book I’m reading with Rebekah;
  • Study and preparation for my men’s Bible-study groups;
  • The “Daily Walk” Sunday morning class;
  • Rebekah’s Sunday sermon;
  • The content of hymns and praise-songs;
  • Scriptures referenced in the WFPC “Leaflets” weekly news bulletin;
  • Prompting from God when my mind is “quickened” by the Holy Spirit to access the wealth of scripture that’s tucked away in the recesses of my heart and mind;
  • Verses posted by friends on Facebook….

I got this mornings “cue” from the Upper Room daily devotion. Interestingly, at breakfast, I was once more pointed to John 15 via the book of meditations I’m reading with Rebekah.

I am particularly arrested by the phrase, “remain in my love.” It’s also translated “abide in my love,” “continue in my love,” “stay in my love,” “dwell in my love,” “live in my love,” and “make yourselves at home in my love.”

The words, “making ourselves at home in God’s love” hit the heart of what God is teaching me today. I really appreciate the image of snuggling in, pouring a cup of coffee, putting my feet up, and settling in for a long evening of conversation and deep “presence” with God.

Here, on another Monday morning with a long week ahead, it’s not only comforting but empowering to talk about a quality of God-consciousness that doesn’t necessarily require words to keep the contact alive, but rests on – and rests in – the powerful truth of abiding.

Thank you, Lord God, for such a deep-rooted and systemic understanding of your strengthening love – DEREK

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