As believers in Christ we have already been grafted into Christ, we have been put in Christ, and all we have to do is abide in Him. Just remain here – stay at home in Christ! How? The Bible is full of indications here and there concerning the simple ways of practicing our abiding in the Lord. This morning we were enjoying the simple ways of always rejoicing, unceasingly praying, in everything giving thanks (see 1 Thes. 5:16-17). This is the will of God in Christ Jesus for us, that we always rejoice, that we pray unceasingly, and that we give thanks to God in all things and for everything!
abiding in the Lord daily and moment by moment
At the moment of our regeneration the Triune God came into our spirit with all that He is and all He has accomplished – He came to abide in us, remain in us, and continually supply us from within. Our whole Christian life is now a process of learning to abide in the Lord in big things or small things, at home or at work, among our friends, with our colleagues, and in all our living and actions. We are learning to abide in the Lord daily and moment by moment, checking with Him about everything, thanking Him, praying to Him, and opening to Him. As we abide in Him, we are soaked and saturated with Him, and He abides in us richly!
giving thanks to the Lord in everything
When we give thanks to the Lord, we are spontaneously brought into Him and we abide in Him. This is a very simple way to abide in the Lord – give Him thanks! Even after the moment of our regeneration, if we simply thank the Lord for coming into us, the light will shine brighter and we will abide in the Lord. We shouldn’t just ask the Lord for things that we need for our human existence; we need to rather increase our thanking Him for everything. Thank the Lord for having breath, for being healthy, for the divine life, for your mingled spirit, for what He has done for us, for what He is to us, etc. There are so many things we can thank Him for!
1 Thessalonians speaks of how we can be saved and how we can live a holy life for the church life, and it is here that Paul encourages us to give thanks in everything (1 Thes. 5:16). In Colossians we see that the life of experiencing Christ is a life of giving thanks in everything and for all things. In Ephesians we see the church in a very high and comprehensive way – we can have the church life only by living in spirit, and such a church life is a matter of giving thanks in everything. For us to live our Christian life for the church life and for us to experience Christ in a proper way, we need to give thanks to the Lord in everything!
Many times we forget to thank the Lord for everything: when we feel happy we may thank Him, but when we don’t feel anything or when we feel down we don’t thank Him. A very good way for us to be uplifted from our condition and to be brought into a higher enjoyment of the Lord is to thank Him. We can thank Him for the things He gave us, for the people He put around us, for the human life, for the divine life, etc – we will soon discover there are SO MANY things we can thank Him for! This opening to Him to thank Him will deepen our organic union with Him and will bring us further in our abiding in the Lord!
unceasingly pray – praying unceasingly
What does it really mean to “unceasingly pray“? Does it mean that you have to stop any other outward activity and spend 24/7 in prayer on your knees before God? This natural thought seems rather impractical and intangible, impossible to attain by a human being. Prayer is an activity of our spirit – our mingled spirit prays all the time. To pray is to use our spirit to fellowship with God. Our spirit is always willing, ready to pray, but we need to turn to our spirit and use our spirit to pray! Let us not quench the Spirit in our spirit (1 Thes. 5:19) but allow our spirit to be active all the time by praying unceasingly!
Wherever we are, whatever we do, no matter in what condition we are, we can simply call on the name of the Lord, O Lord Jesus! We may call audibly or we may call inwardly – as we call, we breathe spiritually! We pray unceasingly by all the time learning to turn to our ever-praying spirit and keep it active and living. There are many simple ways to turn to our spirit and thank the Lord, praise Him, rejoice in Him, and pray. If we daily practice this as a spiritual exercise, we will spontaneously abide in the Lord and enjoy all that He is – He will be our life, and we will become His living, His expression!
Thank You Lord for everything. Thank You for Your living Word. Thank You for Your speaking today. Thank You for revealing us these simple ways to abide in You. Lord, we want to enjoy You as life and as everything. Increase our thanking. Uplift our experience and enjoyment of You by our giving thanks in everything. Lord, keep us praying unceasingly by turning to You in our spirit everywhere and at all times. Lord, amen, keep us turning all the way!
References and Further Reading
- Sharing inspired from, Abiding in the Lord to Enjoy His Life (chs. 1-3, by brother Witness Lee), as quoted in the Holy Word for Morning Revival on the Crystallization-Study of Psalms (2), week 16 – become a fan on Facebook for more updates;
- Buy the Morning Revival on Psalms (Crystallization-Study, part 2) online;
- Hymns on this topic:
# Always rejoice, unceasingly pray, in everything give thanks!
# Rejoice in the Lord always, and again I say, rejoice!
# We have seen Christ is reality: / But it’s not sufficient just to see: / He in our experience must be / Everything to us!
- Picture source: in everything give thanks.
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