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UCB Word For You

Get to the roots

25 September 2021
‘Your roots will grow down into God’s love and keep you strong.’

Plants need strong, healthy root systems to thrive. Those with weak or damaged roots can still grow, but they won’t be able to reach their full potential or withstand stresses as effectively. The good news is that the plants can be treated and the roots encouraged to grow stronger. Some plants suffer from root rot. Once the problem has been identified, the roots need to be washed clean, the bad parts cut away, and the plant is repotted in fresh soil. And sometimes we need to do the same. Flawed roots produce flawed fruit, like feelings of inferiority, worthlessness, anger, inability to trust, and fear of intimacy. If our root system contains things like rejection, past mistakes, and painful experiences, we need to bring them out into the open and treat them. And we can do that with God’s help. ‘He will empower you with inner strength through his Spirit. Then Christ will make his home in your hearts as you trust in him. Your roots will grow down into God’s love and keep you strong’ (vv. 16-17 NLT). The assurance of God’s love can bring healing to our emotions. We no longer have to draw our security and self-worth from how others treat us or from our background. But it’s a process. Strong roots require three things: 1) Time to grow. Becoming confident in our identity as God’s child is like breaking in new shoes. We have to walk in them until they become comfortable. 2) Protection from things that can be harmful. We need to surround ourselves with people who build us up instead of tearing us down; people ‘who share the same precious faith’ (see 2 Peter 1:1). 3) Spiritual nourishment. We need to pray and feed ourselves regularly from God’s Word (see Job 23:12).

What Now?

Do a bit of gardening (if you haven’t got access to a garden, ask a friend or neighbour if there’s any gardening you could do for them). As you’re working, ask God to help you be rooted firmly in His love.

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