Jesus said to those Jews who believed in him,
‘If you remain in my word, you will truly be my disciples,
and you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.’”
When I was in eighth grade my class took a trip to visit Washington D.C. We arrived in a big tour bus which drove us around to all the important sites and museums. We stayed in a hotel together. We took a lot of photos and we came home.
I had a clear and distinct image in my mind of what Washington D.C. was like. After all, I had been there!
About 15 years later my wife and I moved back to the city where we lived for three years. The experience of living in the city was very different.
- I didn’t have a tour bus to take me around. I learned to navigate the metro, walk the streets and travel around on my bike.
- I had a house that I lived in, not a hotel. It was our home. We made friends with the neighbors. It was where we welcomed home our second child.
Now when I think back on Washington D.C. I think of it very differently. Because I lived there, there will always be a part of me that is deeply connected to that place.
In today’s passage, Jesus tells people to “remain” in his word. The word “remain” in Greek is μένω (menō). It’s related to taking up residence and moving in. We’re called to move into what Jesus says.
It’s easy to develop a tourist spirituality. By this I mean we visit God from time to time through prayer or going to church, but we have our own life we return to. God calls us to sell our lives and move in with him. He doesn’t want us to simply be spiritual tourists he wants us to learn what it’s like to abide in him.
Question of the day: Is there a part of your life that needs to be put up for sale so that you can move in with God more fully?