Monday, June 12, 2017

Rooted and Grounded in Love

For this reason I bow my knees to the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, from whom the whole family in heaven and earth is named, that He would grant you, according to the riches of His glory, to be strengthened with might through His Spirit in the inner man, that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith; that you, being rooted and grounded in love, may be able to comprehend with all the saints what is the width and length and depth and height—to know the love of Christ which passes knowledge; that you may be filled with all the fullness of God.—Ephesians 3:17-20

There’s an ancient, gnarled cherry tree in our back yard that has seen better days. Its bark is dark and creased with age; its limbs are sparse and spindly and it leans about 15 degrees to the east. A couple of years ago I had to cut off several large branches on one side and the tree lost its symmetry. Two winters ago, we had several sub–zero days in a row and I thought we had lost it for sure. The man that sprays our trees was convinced it was dead.

Yet, it came to life last spring and continues to do so every year. Each April it shrugs off winter and puts out blossoms—fragrant white flowers that grow in profusion, that beautify and perfume our yard.  Carolyn wants to cut it down, but I can’t do it. I love that old tree. 

The tree endures because its roots are deep into the soil. It draws its life and strength from a hidden, subterranean source. 

And so it is with us: our ability to endure—no, to flourish—is dependent on our “rootedness” in Christ. Those who read and reflect upon His Word and pray it into their souls continue to bear fruit—the fruit of the Spirit—even into old age. As the psalmist promised, “Those who are planted in the house of the Lord shall flourish in the courts of our God. They shall still bear fruit in old age; they shall be fresh and flourishing” (Psalm 902:14).

David Roper

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