I really like to read the Bible aloud, and last week I was reading from Ephesians when this phrase caught in my mind. And it’s been sitting there ever since…
I keep coming back to wondering what it must be like, and how(!) to send roots down deep into God’s love. I really want to be like the tree described in Jeremiah 17 that’s fruitful in all circumstances. Its root system goes deep into the water table, so even when there’s no water to be seen on the surface, it’s able to draw refreshment and life up from deep places.
Spiritual life seems to run in seasons. One day I’m flying, Jesus has never seemed so close, miracles are happening around me, I’m undone in the presence of God and every page of the Bible comes alive. A few months later everything can suddenly seem much more difficult. Faith might not waver, but enthusiasm and energy certainly do.
For a long while I thought this was a kind of malfunction. That I should be able to maintain a level of passion and fervency and intimacy with God all the time. Truthfully – I can’t. But I’m starting to believe that it might not be so abnormal. All around us seasons come and go, plants grow vigorously and are then pruned back, people are active and then sleep. It seems to be the way of the world our Father has created that things have a rhythm to them.
The picture of being rooted says to me that perhaps it’s OK for spiritual life to be seasonal- That an ebb and flow of feelings and experiences is natural – but that it is possible to be rooted in God’s love in such a way that no matter what season you are in, living water can always be drawn up from the deep.
Are you in an easy season or a dry one? Are storm winds catching your branches or are you resting in a time of peace? Either way the advice is the same – send your roots down deeper into the river of life. Joseph advised Pharaoh to store up food during the times of plenty in order to be able to survive times of famine. If you’re in a plenty time – enjoy it – store up food for the future, practice trust. And if you’re in a drought – look deep, the water of life is still present, seek and you will find.
Plant me Lord
on the bank of a river
Show me how to send roots deep into you.
So that in good years
in bad years
in wet times and in dry
There will be fruit to feed the hungry
There will be leaves to give shelter to the weary
There will be the promise of water nearby for the thirsty
And when the storm comes
Though I bend in the force of the wind
My heart will remain – anchored to yours.
like a tree planted by the water
I’d love to hear your thoughts on what you can do to drive roots down deep into the love of God. Please leave a comment -either here or on Facebook- Ellie