John 15:4, 7
Jesus told his followers: “Abide in me as I abide in you… If you abide in me, ask for whatever you wish (need) and it will be done for you.”
Words of Hope
As a little boy living in a small farming community, I was mystified by this story of a Kansas state prayer meeting. There was a drought and the crops were being ruined by the lack of rain. The local pastor called the townsfolk to a “pray for rain” meeting. People from all over the town came, some were regular church attenders; whereas, others rarely darkened the church’s door by their presence. All needed rain for their crops. Among those attending that night was a older widow lady whose vegetable garden was wilting away from lack of rain.
The pastor had expected to see her that night, because she was one of the most faithful Christians in that town. And wouldn’t you know it, that night with the sky broken open with falling raindrops, she was the only person at that service who had brought her umbrella! If you live your life and allow the presence of the living God to abide in your life, your desires will be the same as the desire of God. In these verses from the gospel, Jesus promises that if we open our life to God’s desires for us, we can ask for whatever we need and a loving God will want to provide the same desire for us. What a fantastic promise to those who surrender their life and seek God’s desired purpose in it!
It’s a reason for rejoicing, which brings to mind another verse: With rejoicing “I shall draw water from the river of God’s blessings. And on that day, I shall say: Give thanks to the Lord.” (Isaiah 12:3) This verse indicates a deep source of God’s liberating and life-giving blessings. It reflects the image of a heavenly scene revealed in John’s divine revelation of the ever-flowing abundance of blessings which flow from God’s throne to the souls in heaven. “The angel showed me the river of the water of life, bright as crystal, flowing from the throne of God.” (Revelation 22:1) If you surrender your life to God and daily live out the divine desires, you are promised a future heavenly life of blessed goodness in the presence of the Holy One.
However, you don’t have to wait until after death to experience those spiritual blessings. If you surrender your life to God’s desire for you and strive to live with the presence of God in your daily life, you can have a foretaste of that blessed heavenly experience NOW. Some of heaven’s joy can be experienced today in your current life! Oh, how wonderful it is to be able to live through today’s uncertainties with the assured presence of God’s rich blessings which are drawn from the divine and deep flowing river of life!
May I surrender my life to you so that in all the opportunities of this day, I will manifest your loving presence to others and be obedient to your desires. Be it ever so. Amen.
Donald (Luke) Day
Order of St. Francis and St. Clare