As you therefore have received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk in Him, rooted and built up in Him and established in the faith, as you have been taught, abounding in it with thanksgiving. Colossians 2:6-7
I read these verses a few days ago, and it got me thinking about roots. Plant roots. The word ‘rooted’ in this scripture comes from the Greek word ‘rhiza’ or root. The same word from which we get ‘rhizome’ – the underground ‘stem’ of a plant, the main part of the root which sends out root shoots. Just as the above ground stem of the plant which shoots out leaves and flowers, branches and fruit. Plant roots keep growing.
I love looking back, and I guess reading this verse made me do that. Thinking about the people and things that established my faith in Jesus. My parents, the faithful Sunday School Leaders and Bible Teachers. The stories and truths of the Bible. I can look back at the roots or origins of my faith and be so grateful. I’m sure we can all look back to where our faith journeys began and be thankful for the things that established us.
Ultimately it is Jesus our faith is rooted in, of course. Our belief in Him, His death and resurrection, His mercy and grace, His forgiveness and His gift of eternal life.
ROOTS IN THE PAST
This last week our church came together to give thanks to God for the journey our church has been on in the 18 years since we began meeting together. It was part of a celebration as our founding pastors step back and a new couple takes on the reins of leadership. I was honoured to write a potted history of the church and to present that, with contributions from others who have walked the journey with us. It was so good to look back at our ‘roots’, the things that became established as God revealed to us what sort of church He had called us to be. Those things are now foundational to our identity as church. Things that we can build on going forward.
But I really felt God say – don’t neglect your roots!
ROOTS IN THE PRESENT
Roots don’t stop growing. From my limited understanding of botany, as long as the plant keeps growing the roots keep spreading. New root shoots are sent out looking for water and nutrients in the soil as the plant grows. These also provide stability for the plant as it increases in size. This is why tree roots can actually grow considerably wider and deeper than the tree itself.
If we want to continue to grow and flourish in our faith. If we want to be strong to withstand the storms thrown at us. If we want to produce fruit that is of lasting worth, we can’t just see our roots as the things of the past! We have to keep our roots healthy and growing. We need to ‘walk in Him’. To keep pursuing Him. The nutrients of His living word, the Bible. The water of His Spirit. We have to keep going deeper. This is true for us as individuals as much as it was a truth for our church as it enters a new season.
ROOTS DON’T STOP GROWING
It’s tempting to look back and say ‘wasn’t that great’, ‘didn’t we start well’. Our roots are strong now and we can let them be.
But ROOTS DO NOT STOP GROWING, whilst the plant stays alive and thriving. They demand our attention. So we can be thankful for all we have received but must always be yearning for more. It will make as strong and keep us fruitful.
“But he who received seed on the good ground is he who hears the word and understands it, who indeed bears fruit and produces: some a hundredfold, some sixty, some thirty.” Matthew 13: 23
Joy Margetts is a published author and blogger. Her books are works of Christian Historical fiction. Set in medieval Wales against the backdrop of Cistercian abbey life, they tell stories of faith, hope and God’s redemptive power. Her debut novel ‘The Healing‘ was published by Instant Apostle on 19 March 2021. Joy has also self- published a short novella, ‘The Beloved‘ as both a companion to ‘The Healing‘, and as an easy to read standalone story, which is available to buy on Amazon Kindle.
‘The Pilgrim‘, her second full length novel, was published by Instant Apostle on 22 July 2022
More information on Joy, and her books can be found here www.joymargetts.com