Sunday, August 12, 2012

Digging In - The Need For Roots

This week is one that I always anticipate with a love/hate attitude.  It's the week before school starts or the last week of summer vacation (whichever way you like to look at it!).  The lazy days of freedom and summer fun are slipping away and the days of structure, learning, schedules and routines are almost here.  I love the good feeling of summer, but function much more efficiently when a routine is in place. 

Years ago I read a book - "A Woman After God's Own Heart" by Elizabeth George which contained a small chapter about 'roots' and how important it is to have deep, spiritual roots.  Every Christian woman should have roots dug deep in the truth of God's Word,  but, unlike the fun, easygoing days of summer, roots are established through routine, diligence and purposefully making good choices.   Here are a few key words about 'roots'.

ROOTS ARE UNSEEN:  Your spiritual roots are unseen or invisible to others.  This refers to your hidden, private life, or the secret time you enjoy with God. 

Did you know that the massiveness of an iceberg is only1/7 visible?  Even with all it's splendor and beauty, the greater portion is unseen. 

If in our spiritual life, we faithfully nurture what is beneath the surface, others will marvel at what they see of God in us.  Our strength in public is explained by what goes on in  private between God and us. 

It's easy to sometimes get off kilter in the thinking that what counts in the Christian life is the time spent in public.  But the truth is..."the greater the proportion of your day - of your life - spent hidden in quiet, in reflection, in prayer,  in study, in scheduling, in preparation, the greater will be the effectiveness, the impact, the power of the part of your life that shows."  The impact of our public ministry will be in direct proportion to the time we spend away from people and with God. 

ROOTS ARE FOR TAKING IN:  When we deliberately take time to be with God in study and prayer, we receive or take in.  We are nurtured, fed and in turn prepared.  We grow spiritually.  God supplies us with strength and encourages us in our pursuit of Him.    This is a great time to exchange our limited resources for His inexhaustible ways:
  • Our weariness for His strength
  • our weakness for His power
  • our darkness for His light
  • our problems for His solutions
  • our burdens for His freedoms
  • our frustrations for His peace
  • our turmoil for His calm
  • our hopes for His promises
  • our afflictions for His comfort
  • our questions for His answers
  • our confusion for His knowledge
  • our doubt for His assurance
  • our impossible for His possible.

ROOTS ARE FOR STORAGE:  Roots serve as a reservoir of what we need.  When we draw regularly from God's Word, it creates a place of hope and strength in Him.  When times get tough, that reservoir is there to keep us going.  We wont' be depleted, dry up or disintegrate.  We can reach down to draw out what has been stored up and continue on. 

ROOTS ARE FOR SUPPORT:  Without a well developed root system, things get top heavy  and when a wind comes along, will topple. We dont' want lots of beautiful foliage ( pleasing to the eye), but has nothing to support it underneath.  Having a strong root system prepares us to stand strong through the pressures of life.

It takes much effort to establish roots, but as we 'dig in' to get settled into our back to school routines, it is a perfect time to start to develop our roots in the Lord!

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