Rising Joy, by Vicki Matheny
As for you, what you have heard from the beginning must remain in you. If what you heard from the beginning remains in you, you also will remain in the Son and in the Father. … And now, little children, remain in him, so that when he appears we may have confidence and not shrink away from him in shame when he comes back. 1 John 2.24, 28
The concept of remaining is not a popular one today. Commitment seems to be from a bygone era. We stay until the going gets tough and then we turn and walk away. We cannot treat our relationship with God in the same way. Indeed, if we walk away from Jesus, to whom will we go? Peter said much the same in John 6.68. What is it that must remain in me? What I heard from the beginning must remain. That means that I must cling to the truth that I heard and learned in the beginning. Creativity is a good thing, just not in my relationship to God. God sets the terms of agreement and I must simply obey them. If I do, I have the assurance of remaining in the Son and the Father. When Jesus comes back to claim his church, his people, what will our attitude be? Will we have confidence that we have remained in him by being steadfast and unmovable, constant? Or will we shrink in shame knowing that we had it in our grasp, but we turned and walked away. The choice is ours. What will your choice be?