Let your roots grow down into Him, and let your lives be built on Him. Then your faith will grow strong in the truth you were taught, and you will overflow with thankfulness. Colossians 2:7 NLT
Appearances can be deceiving.
This morning while watering my outdoor plants, I noticed a withering vine. I couldn’t tell anything was wrong with it until I stood right next to it. From a distance, the entire plant appeared to be thriving, the little shoot disappearing into beautiful cascades of green blooming with bright pink flowers. But when I got close, a cluster of withered leaves drew my attention.
They hung there—limp—entwined and hiding among the healthy leaves.
A little investigation uncovered the cause. Strong winds from a recent storm had broken the vine at the top, disconnecting it from its life source. True to their climbing nature, leaves from the healthy shoots had wound around it, holding the broken piece in place, but their grip couldn’t offer the life it needed.
Being held in proximity to the root system is no substitute for being rooted yourself.
As I looked at the little broken piece, my heart began to stir for the church. I saw how the enemy has sent storms, strategically designed to sever our connection to Jesus. He has succeeded in more ways than we have realized.
Hidden within our churches, detached hearts languish and wither. From a distance, they appear to be growing and thriving alongside everyone else, but their prosperity is an illusion.
They are held, not rooted.
Instead of connecting to Jesus themselves, the arms of rooted believers hold them close to Him. They receive some level of strength from the people supporting them, their corporate experience of worship and fellowship offering periodic comfort to their wounded souls.
But it can’t restore them.
So, although they’re held close by loving members of the body, they continue to wither. Without personally connecting to Jesus, they will never thrive, no matter how entwined they are with the people who know Him.Unless we are rooted in Jesus ourselves, we forfeit our ability to bloom. Click To Tweet
Jesus said in John 15:4, “Abide in Me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit by itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can you, unless you abide in Me.”
Jesus wants you rooted, dear one. He wants you to personally experience the depth of His great love for you. Only knowing that love becomes an anchor that sustains His life in you, even in difficult times. In Christ’s kingdom, storms shouldn’t destroy and deplete us. When we draw from the Life Giver, they only serve to strengthen us and establish victories over the enemy we didn’t know were possible.
Open your heart to the reality of God’s desires for you, beloved.
…that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith—that you, being rooted and grounded in love, 18 may have strength to comprehend with all the saints what is the breadth and length and height and depth, 19 and to know the love of Christ that surpasses knowledge, that you may be filled with all the fullness of God. Ephesians 3:17-18
God wants to fill you with the complete expression of who He is. It begins when you personally encounter His love for you and dare to return it. In that place of unbroken fellowship—rooted in His vast love expressed toward you—the Life He brings will begin to revive and restore what pain has left dead and broken in you.
Oh, dear one. Regardless of the condition you presently find yourself in, you can take hold of this miraculous promise. In Christ’ kingdom, broken and detached branches can be grafted back in!
And even they, if they do not continue in their unbelief, will be grafted in, for God has the power to graft them in again. Romans 11:23
Precious one, don’t settle for earthly expressions of divine fellowship. Go to the Source. Dare to surrender your heart to the One who made it. Offer it to Him freely, and He will give you His in return. Confess your unbelief and invite Jesus to lead you.
And experience the love that will leave you overflowing with thankfulness.My Journey into Glory, Part 2 You’re Not Who You Think You Are