In today’s gospel, the single verse, (Jn. 15:4), contains the verb “remain” eight times. John could have substituted something like “as I DO” for at least one or two of those repetitions to smooth out the message of Jesus, but he didn’t. It makes me think that he was trying to push the point. In a commentary from The Little White Book, the author gives us lots of possibilities about the use of the word “remain” – like “abide with” or “dwell.” Then there is a suggestion of “settle in” with the following comment.
“There are some people (probably not too many) with whom I am completely ‘at home.’ I’m glad to see them and be with them. I ‘settle in’ and relax with them. When I settle in with someone, I don’t have to be talking all the time. It’s just plain good to be together. I’m at ease, at home with them. I don’t have to prove anything, show off. We’re together and all is well. If we do talk, we can talk about anything. And sometimes we do.”
Then the author asks two questions that I think are worth a day’s reflection:
1. Do I settle in with the Lord?
2. I wonder if I allow the Lord to settle in with me. Do I?