John 15:4-5, 7 – “Remain in Me, and I in you. Just as the branch cannot bear fruit of itself but must remain in the vine, so neither can you unless you remain in Me. 5 I am the vine, you are the branches; the one who remains in Me, and I in him bears much fruit, for apart from Me you can do nothing…7 If you remain in Me, and My words remain in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you.”
Jesus calls His disciples to abide which means to remain, dwell, tarry, or in modern day vernacular – continually hang out in Him.
Today, we hear a lot about online dating. Young people can be drawn into encountering someone in person by words in a chat room format. There is power in the written word because there is a person, a personality, behind it. The same is true of the Word of God. Jesus tells His disciples, if my words remain in you, ask whatever you wish. It is as if Jesus is saying, if you are dwelling and hanging out with my words, they will guide your prayer life into an encounter.
Many people visit Jesus on a Sunday or before a meal or when they are desperate for Him. Not many want to remain in His Word – dwelling, tarrying, hanging out there; having it shape them.
I married a spouse whose family is from England where a lot of tea is consumed. The best way to drink tea is to boil water and then just set the tea bag in it and watch it saturate and transform the water. Oddly, there are some ‘dippers.’ People who dip their tea bag in and out which is more work. Jesus wants to make sure we are being saturated in His Word and not just dipping in and out of church, the Bible, prayer etc. so we can bear much fruit and transformation.