From Bill Gaultiere:
“The Psalmist prophesied, “[The Lord] raised up for his people a horn [the Christ], the praise of… the people close to his heart” (Psalm 148:14). I read this and my heart melts within me… “The people close to his heart.” I am close to the Lord’s heart! In Christ God draws close to me, to love me — even now in this moment. I belong to the Lord! So do you!
Jesus said, “Just as the Father has loved me, I have also loved you; abide in my love” (John 15;9). Abide. Eleven times in his gospel John described our intimacy with Jesus as abiding. What does it mean to abide in Christ?
Abiding is Affectionate
Some Bible teachers want to reduce abiding to obeying the Lord’s commands…but obedience is more the outcome of abiding rather than the essence of it…Abiding in Jesus is a way of relating and being with him, remaining in his love continually. Abiding is “intimate and organic” (John 15:5, MSG).
…Our primary identity is not what we do — it’s our abiding in Jesus. This is a revolutionary statement with deep spiritual and psychological implications for our identity, well-being, and way of life.
With John we can say, “I am the disciple Jesus loves!”… (John 13:23 and 26; 20:2; 21:7 and 20.) We can learn to live in greater intimacy with Jesus — at first, just for moments, but as we grow in God’s grace it becomes more our way of being so that as we do whatever we’re doing we’re abiding in Jesus and the Father, finding our support, significance, and strength as we lean on Jesus’ chest.”
Bill Gaultiere writing at Soul Shepherding