God could have kept Daniel out of the lion’s den…But God has never promised to keep us out of hard places…What he promised is to go with us through every hard place, and bring us through victoriously.
It is possible for sheep to wander away from the fold and the shepherd, and find in the jungle good pasturage, but they are all the time in danger of being torn to pieces by wild beasts, which will indeed be their fate in the end. But those who abide in the fold with the shepherd, though they may appear to be sick and feeble, are certainly free from anger and in the shepherd’s care. This is the difference between believers and unbelievers.
Abiding in Jesus is not a work that needs each moment the mind to be engaged, or the affections to be directly and actively occupied with it. It is an entrusting of oneself to the keeping of the Eternal Love, in the faith that it will abide near us, and with its holy presence watch over us and ward off the evil, even when we have to be most intently occupied with other things. And so the heart has rest and peace and joy in the consciousness of being kept when it cannot keep itself.
When I go aside in order to pray, I find my heart unwilling to approach God; and when I tarry in prayer my heart is unwilling to abide in Him. Therefore I am compelled first to pray to God to move my heart into Himself, and when I am in Him, I pray that my heart remain in Him.”
The branch of the vine does not worry, and toil, and rush here to seek for sunshine, and there to find rain. No; it rests in union and communion with the vine; and at the right time, and in the right way, is the right fruit found on it. Let us so abide in the Lord Jesus.
The resources of the Christian life, my friends, are just–Jesus Christ…. the many references to Christ in you, you in Christ, Christ our life, and abiding in Christ are literal, actual, blessed fact, and not figures of speech…Jesus Christ does not want to be our helper; He wants to be our life. He does not want us to work for Him. He wants us to let Him do His work through us, using us as we use a pencil to write with–better still, using us as one of the fingers of His hand.
Be not discouraged because of your soul’s enemies. Are ye troubled with thoughts, fears, doubts, imaginations, reasonings? Yea, do ye see, yet, much in you unsubdued to the power of life? Oh! Do not fear it; do not look at it, as to be discouraged by it; but look to Him! Look up to the power which is over all their strength; wait for the descendings of the power upon you; abide in faith of the Lord’s help, and wait in patience till the Lord arise; and see if His arm do not scatter what yours could not. So, be still before Him, and in stillness, believe in His name; yea, enter not into the hurryings of the enemy, though they fill the soul; for, there is yet somewhat to which they cannot enter, from whence patience, faith, and hope, will spring up in you, even in the midst of all they can do.
If a house should be taken for us by a friend, and we were told it was ready, and that the lease and all the necessary papers were duly attested and signed, we should not ask how we could get into it. We should just pack up and move in …. God says that He is our dwelling place, and the Bible contains all the necessary papers, duly attested and signed. And our Lord invites us, nay more, commands us to enter in and abide there. In effect He says, God is your dwelling place, and you must see to it that you take up your abode there. You must move in.
Abide in Me: These words are the command of love, which is ever only a promise in a different shape. Think of this until all feeling of burden and fear and despair pass away, and the first thought that comes as you hear of abiding in Jesus be one of bright and joyous hope.
The blessed Lord condensed it all into one single message of eternal comfort spoken to the disciples on the Sea of Galilee, It is I, be not afraid. He is the antidote to fear; He is the remedy for trouble; He is the substance and the sum of deliverance. We should, therefore, rise above fear. Let us keep our eyes fastened upon Him; let us abide continually in Him; let us be content with Him. Let us cling closely to Him and cry, Therefore will not we fear, though the earth be removed, and though the mountains be carried into the midst of the sea (Psalm 46:2).