Back to the roots…..

We wanted to share some things that we have felt the Lord speaking to us about…..

On Sunday we were at home reading Jesus’ words together as a family and sharing together. Outside two men were cutting down some Apple trees in the allotments over the road from us. It was a little sad to see these apple trees which were absolutely laden with fruit just a few months ago being chopped back to the root. These trees are being taken out – all the branches were chopped back and soon the roots will be dug out. We could not help but think that maybe God had something to say to us through it……..We thought about John 15 and what Jesus said about pruning. This was not pruning though. So we tried to get a sense of what God was trying to say to us. What struck us was that to take a tree out is a pretty drastic thing. It is taking something out by the root.

The word “root” can mean the “part of a plant that grows down into the earth obtaining nourishment” or a “person’s sense of belonging”. We thought about these things and remembered the words of Paul in Colossians 2:7,

“As you therefore have received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk in Him, rooted and built up in Him..”

Paul reminds us to be rooted in Jesus. Not rooted in an “it” or a “thing.” Sure we find ourselves as part of the body of Christ, as part of ministries and organisations. But maybe we need to revisit what it means to be rooted in Jesus. What we take up in our roots will be seen in our fruits. Do people see Jesus and everything that is true of Jesus when they look at us as Christians. My conclusion – based on talking to hundreds/thousands of people around the world would be NO. So there must be some problem here – as God’s intention is that when people look at His followers working out their salvation together (Church/Body of Christ) they see Him. Isn’t that what Paul had in mind when he wrote this is Ephesians 4:12-14

“till we all come to the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to a perfect man, to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ….”

Whatever we think salvation is or involves – surely it is about people being uprooted from the ground of selfishness and self-centredness and instead planted into Jesus. It is all happening at the root level. Jesus said the same in the parable of the sower. The determining factor in all these types of soil was the depth of roots which the seeds were able to grow.

So can were-address the balance a bit?

Can we act as though seeing people rooted and built up in Jesus is the most important thing?  Can we place obedience to Jesus and what He wants from us as more important than maintaining our standard of living or maintaining and cherishing the status quo in the Body of Christ?

The other aspect of the word “root” is that it talks about a person’s sense of belonging. We talk about going back to our roots when we revisit places where we have grown up or when we do things that we used to do. I know people all over the world who are questioning their sense of belonging in the Body of Christ. They are not doubting their faith in Jesus or running away from sharing this faith corporately. But they are seriously questioning where their allegiance lies – to the status quo of what has become normal “Church Life” or to the path which they feel Jesus is asking them to join Him on.

What is sure is this. Dealing with things in a surfacy sunday morning Christian way is not good enough. “How are you?”….”I’m OK”……..

We are not “OK”

We are desperate to walk in the reality of Jesus and His words on a daily basis and to share in this with others. God invites us to this. We were made for this. And the broken and hurting world around us is crying out for this.

{ 6 comments… read them below or add one }

Lovely Duffetts February 1, 2010 at 4:21 pm

Good thinking Taylors… often when I pray God speaks powerfully about the things aroudn me- ‘roted in Christ.’ Yes.


Lizz Selway February 1, 2010 at 4:33 pm

And surely, as we become more rooted in Jesus we will see ‘church life’ begin to change too.

I am reminded of the words of a Matt Redman song- when my heart runs dry…

When my heart runs dry
And there’s no song to sing
No holy melody
No words of love within
I recall the height from which
This fragile heart has slipped…
And I’ll remember You
I will turn back and do
The things I used to do
for the love of You
Lord, I’ll remember You
I will turn back and do
The things I used to do
for the love of You
You are my soul’s desire
You are the hope within
You bring my heart to life
You make my spirit sing
I recall the height from which
This fragile heart has slipped…

Sometimes it’s hard to take that stand in church related stuff , but it comes back to being rooted in Christ and not seeking man’s approval.


Johnny Paisley February 1, 2010 at 5:02 pm

Ben and Cath ….. this is good stuff and is very challenging (as it should be!)


marcel February 1, 2010 at 5:55 pm

Not the easy way, but the only way to soak living water, to stand firm, to bear fruit.
Love from Antwerp.


Richard February 1, 2010 at 6:30 pm

Ben and Cath, I agree that we need to be firmly rooted in Christ for us to live out Jesus in the whole of our lives. I love the way nature teaches our hearts how to nurture. I do challenge though your comments on the ‘surfacy’ of sunday church. Nothing has to happen in sunday church for me to meet with God and feel his profound effect and guidance on my life. Through this he gives me direction and inspiration of how to proceed in my walk with Jesus and keeps me centred and true. It is more how our heart approaches our church not so much how our church approaches us. Sometimes all I really have needed to hear over the challenging last couple of years is a caring persons ‘how are you’. God Bless and I’d love an opportunity to get together one day for a time of prayer and reflection. Richard


Jo Parker February 2, 2010 at 4:01 am

i think you have hit the nail on the head with this one. 🙂 I had started to wonder why we were her in QLD and what God was meaning for us 2 do!?? I thought it was perhaps to witness, help and bless others, and i think that is part of it, but i think it has also been to STRENGTHEN our FAITH and TRUST in HIM and KNOW that we KNOW that HE is for us and we where He wants us to be. We are doing bible studies and having communion on Sundays, as well as trying to have quiet times during the week (when the kids are in bed, mind you!) and it has really been a huge help in getting back to the roots of WHO we are in HIM and where HE wants us to be and what HE wants us to do!! 🙂 That blog blesses me heaps, will share it with family also … it’s good “meat” for encouragement and sharping up in the faith!! 🙂


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