written by Kendal Mullins
I have not made New Year’s resolutions for 2021. I was not willing to set myself up for anymore resolution failures. With willpower declining when the brain is fatigued, I figured setting resolutions was just setting myself up for failure.
Rather, I am preparing myself for a new normal; preparing myself to be uprooted in this coming year.
2020 was a year spent rooted: physically rooted at home and rooted in God’s love. Rooted at home: fear, care, and rule-following kept me close to home – to my physical location. Rooted, I tried to follow Jesus’s command to abide in love. I prayed for hope, perseverance, and resilience. It was not easy; anxiety was real but thanks to therapy and God, I survived.
As I enter 2021, I dare to hope – bigger and with more imagination. Somehow my posture of being rooted feels too fixed, too privileged. And with that, as with much of the work of the Spirit in my life, I gently understand I need to think about it differently.
Abide in me as I abide in you. Just as the branch cannot bear fruit by itself unless it abides in the vine, neither can you unless you abide in me. (John 15:4)
Over the next period, the Walkthrough Blog is going to focus on John chapter 15. The word abide is used nine times in the first 11 verses of John chapter 15. The branch imagery is rich with theological meaning. And somehow very fixed in my mind.
But I am open now, more than ever, to the understanding that abiding is not spatial, it is not stagnant. Abide is relational. Just the same as being rooted in God’s love – relational. It is loyalty and faithfulness to God which I can witness to through actionable love.
My fixed images of being rooted and abiding or dwelling in God’s love are beginning to move, to change. My energy is yearning to be uprooted, to expand beyond my safe space. Uprooting myself towards more action; getting off the sidelines afforded to me through privilege.
How in 2021 can I take God’s love, and go beyond my home, my church, and my privilege and take it to new arenas? I know I will do so, knowing that my roots run deep enough, and I pray will bear much fruit.