Deeply Rooted

Psalm 1 says this: "Blessed is the one who does not walk in step with the wicked or stand in the way that sinners take or sit in the company of mockers, but whose delight is in the law of the Lord, and who meditates on His law day and night. That person is like a tree planted by streams of water, which yields its fruit in season and whose leaf does not wither—whatever they do prospers." (Psalm 1:1-3 NIV)

A tree planted by streams of water flourishes because it has a plentiful water supply. A tree planted in a desert wilderness withers because water is scarce. It is a simple law of nature.

And it is true of our soul. When we delight in God - in His law, which flows from His character - we draw from the deep waters of God's Spirit, and we flourish. Paul spoke about the same thing in Colossians 2:6-7: "So then, just as you received Christ Jesus as Lord, continue to live your lives in him, rooted and built up in Him, strengthened in the faith as you were taught, and overflowing with thankfulness." Deep roots produce a hearty plant! Just look at the dandelion, with its deep tap root. You can pull it up, but that deep root will quickly produce another weed in your lawn!

Jesus spoke about the same thing in John 7:37-39: "On the last and greatest day of the festival, Jesus stood and said in a loud voice, “Let anyone who is thirsty come to me and drink. Whoever believes in me, as Scripture has said, rivers of living water will flow from within them.” By this he meant the Spirit, whom those who believed in Him were later to receive. Up to that time the Spirit had not been given, since Jesus had not yet been glorified."

Here is Scripture's recipe for a flourishing life: grow deep roots into Jesus Christ and draw from Him the life-giving Spirit that refreshes the soul and powers Christlike living.

If I want to flourish, I need to be intentional about being rooted in Christ. Jesus can't just be an afterthought in my life. Everything I am and everything I do must be grounded in Him. It's the difference between religious practices and a trusting relationship with the Living God through His Son. Intentional rootedness (is that even a word?) comes by spending time with Jesus in prayer, in reading the Scriptures, in worship with His people, in study, in living to please Him and not myself, in serving the spiritual disciplines given to us so we can receive grace and grow deep.

A deeply rooted life finds security in Christ whatever storms life throws at us. A deeply rooted life produces fruit - becoming a blessing to others as grace flows through us in service and witness. By the power of the living water within us, we become "Jesus with skin on" for others who are broken or lonely or lost or hurting. And we find even more purpose and meaning in life by doing so!

So let's be intentional about putting deep roots into faith in Jesus Christ, and let's produce fruit out of the flourishing life that results. Then we will find the purpose for which we were created, and God will be glorified in our lives.

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