I bumped a poinsettia plant yesterday and broke a branch.  It is still connected but not completely.  The flower looked full and beautiful but the branch sagged terribly.  Today, surprisingly, the flower looks every bit as good as it did when it first disconnected yesterday.  But you and I both know exactly what it will look like in a few days.  The lush petals will begin to turn black and then curl, turn brown and fall completely away.  The beautifully fresh, red will be gone.  Partial connection isn’t enough to keep it vibrant and alive.

It is the same with our relationship to God through Christ Jesus.  In John 15:5 Jesus says:  I am the vine; you are the branches.  If a man remains in me and I in him, he will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing.”

The word “remains” means:   

·        To be held, kept, continually

·        To continue to be present, not depart, abide

·        To wait for (implying anticipation)

 

"Abide" means:

·        Continue, dwell, endure, be present, remain, stand, tarry for (again, implying anticipation)

 

If we are truly continually connected to Him, we will be able to wait on His answers and guidance with anticipation, rather than be stressed to the maximum with worry or dread.  We can be concerned (even fearful) about a situation and yet anticipate what God is going to do in our lives or the lives of those we care about.  Sometimes our faith is so strong (perhaps because we have been faithful to abide in Him) that we enjoy a complete lack of fear or dread.  We are miraculously enabled to rest in Him and anticipate what He is going to do.

 

I love the expression “hide and watch.”  It reminds me of a little boy peeking around a huge tree trunk to see what “great thing” his Dad is going to do next.  We have a Father who is always going to do what is best for us.  As we choose to abide (stay continually connected) to Him, we too, will be able to “hide and watch” with confident anticipation rather than shrinking back with fear.

 

Isn’t God good!