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The Theology of Abiding

And he said to them, “Why are you afraid, O you of little faith?” Matthew 8:26. ESV

When we are afraid, the least we can do is pray to God. But our Lord has a right to expect that those who call on His name have an underlying confidence in Him. God expects His children to be so confident in Him that in any crisis they are the ones who are reliable. Yet often our trust in God is only up to a certain point, then we turn back to the panic-stricken prayers of those people who do not even know God. We come to our wits’ end, showing that we don’t have even the slightest amount of confidence in Him or in His sovereign control of the world. To us He seems to be asleep, and we can see nothing but giant, breaking waves on the sea ahead of us.

“. . . O you of little faith.” What a stinging pain must have shot through the disciples as they surely thought to themselves, “We missed the mark again!” And what a sharp pain will go through us when we suddenly realize that we could have produced complete and utter joy in the heart of Jesus by remaining absolutely confident in Him in spite of what we were facing.

There are times when there is no storm or crisis in our lives, and we do all that is humanly possible. But it is when a crisis arises that we inherently reveal upon whom we rely. If we have been learning to worship God and to place our trust in Him, the crisis will reveal that we can go to the point of breaking, yet without breaking our confidence in Him.

We talk quite a lot about sanctification. But what is its result in our lives? It is expressed as a peaceful resting (abiding) in God, which means a total oneness with Him. And this oneness will make us not only blameless in His sight, but also a profound joy to Him.

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