Into Jesus’ Side

“If you remain in Me and My words remain in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be given you. This is to My Father’s glory, that you bear much fruit, showing yourselves to be My disciples” (John 15:7-8).

What did Jesus mean by the conditional promise, “If you remain in Me… you bear much fruit?” How does one remain in Jesus?

Have you heard the expression, “Lean into Jesus?” This is what remaining or abiding in Him means, and God’s Word maps out how such a lifestyle is possible!

  1. Revelation 3:20 gives a beautiful picture of Jesus leaning into the door of your heart and knocking. You see, He initiates the relationship. Remember the day you heard and responded to the “knocking?” If you opened the door to Him, you know the sweetness of fellowship with the Lover of your soul. If you have not allowed Jesus to cross the threshold, consider an appropriate reaction today. He will not overtake you without your willingness to invite Him in. That is the behavior of a thief, not the blessed Savior, the Hope for humanity! Hear His desire for oneness with you: “Here I am! I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears My voice and opens the door, I will come in and eat with him, and he with Me” (Revelation 3:20).
  2. Psalm 91:1 compares our hiddenness in Christ to the safety that chicks experience in the covering of a hen’s wings. “He who dwells in the shelter of the Most High will rest in the shadow of the Almighty.” Now that we have opened the door to the One who leaned into us, we respond by leaning into Him. It is through our remaining in His Presence that we know Him and know our identity in Him. Leaning into Jesus to know Him is not an automatic lifestyle. It’s a choice, an intentional action that gives us victory over the many distractions vying for our attention. Jesus told His friend Martha that she was worried about many things. But, concerning her sister who remained at Jesus’ feet and listened to His teaching, He said, “Mary has chosen what is better…” (Luke 10:42).
  3. John 19:34 graphically depicts the opening of Jesus’ side as the result of a Roman soldier verifying our Savior’s death. He pierced Jesus with a spear, “bringing a sudden flow of blood and water.” In the same way, we come into Jesus’ side, into a state of oneness with Him, through the shedding of His blood for the forgiveness of our sins, and through the overflow of living water. Jesus said, “‘If anyone is thirsty, let him come to Me and drink. Whoever believes in Me, as the Scripture has said, streams of living water will flow from within him.’ By this He meant the Spirit, whom those who believed in Him were later to receive” (John 7:37-39). Our lives, connected to Christ and sourced in the Holy Spirit, are exciting journeys because we are led by the Spirit. The overflow of powerful, eternal life pours through us because we are connected to the True Vine and His sap never runs dry. Apart from Him, we can do nothing, but through our remaining in Him, we bear much fruit that holds eternal value.
  4. Luke 5:5 exemplifies the supernatural results of believers remaining in step with the Holy Spirit, because, truly, when He speaks, Jesus Himself is directing our steps. Jesus told the fishermen to release their nets for a catch of fish, but Peter needed Him to know that they had already fished all night and caught nothing. However, the next thing Peter spoke is the truth I want us to grab ahold of: “But because You say so, I will let down the nets.” Get ready for the supernatural overflow! The nets started to break from the mass of fish! Not only so, but a second boat is needed to help haul in the catch, and both boats actually began to sink with the load!

Now, understand that the account of the unsuccessful fishermen newly directed by Jesus’ word is only a glimpse of the possibility we have before us! These men leaned into His command even before the empowerment of the Holy Spirit was at work in their lives. They saw awe-inspiring results simply because they trusted One who had a good reputation among them; they did not yet know the oneness with Christ through the indwelling Holy Spirit. How much more is the prospect of your miraculous catch of men for the kingdom of God through your Spirit-abiding lifestyle?

“If you remain in Me and My words remain in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be given you. This is to My Father’s glory, that you bear much fruit, showing yourselves to be My disciples” (John 15:7-8).

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