When I hear the term “being rooted”, the first thing that comes to mind is a tree. I picture a big, strong tree that has roots that spread out larger than its branches beneath the soil. “So then, just as you received Christ Jesus as Lord, continue to live your lives in him, rooted and built up in him, strengthened in the faith as you were taught, and overflowing with thankfulness.” Colossians 2:6-7. This verse, along with Ephesians 3:16-17, is what started the craving to find out what it means to be “firmly rooted in Christ.”
I think the biblical correlation between the roots of trees and His people being rooted in Him is astounding and very interesting to learn and see. A tree is made up of many different parts, but I want to break it up into four different categories, for times sake. 1.) Roots, 2.) Trunk or Body, 3.) Branches, and 4.) Fruit/Vegetation. I believe that this is the best way to use a tree to represent how we, the followers of Christ, can be rooted in Him and through Jesus can produce the fruits of the Holy Spirit.
Roots. Lets start at the base of the tree. The roots play such an important role in making a tree as strong as it is. It is the anchor for the body, the very thing that keeps the heavy trunk and the large branches from toppling over. Roots grow bigger and bigger as they dig deeper into the soil, searching for water and nutrients. In order for the tree to grow, it needs nutrients and water which is found deep within the earths soil, and the only way that it can be used by the tree is if it is absorbed through the roots. This is a very good representation of what it would mean for Christians to be rooted in Christ and in the Word.
The bible is the very foundation of our faith; without that, we really would have nothing to stand on. The Word is what anchors us, giving us the ability to know the truth and be able to live in accordance to the Holy Spirit. The bible is like water and nutrients; it gives us the necessary tools in order to grow our faith and walk in obedience. “Surely God is my help; the Lord is the one who sustains me.” Psalms 54:4. The roots dig deep into the soil searching for water, for what will sustain life, and that is exactly what the Word and Christ are for us. John 5:21 says, “For just as the Father raises the dead and gives them life, even so the Son also gives life to whom He wishes.” He gives life; Christ is the only way to have eternal life and in using the Word as our foundation, we will be able to seek Christ on a deeper and personal level.
The Trunk or the Body. In a tree, the trunk is probably the most well-known part of the entire tree. The roots are hidden below the ground, unable to be seen, although we know they are there. The branches, though we see them, are often too high for us to touch. But the body of the tree, that is right there for us to touch and witness. That is often where you will find carvings the most often. It is there to support the branches; it connects the roots to the branches and its fruit. Think of it as an underground train tunnel. It is a strong structure that is used to not only support the weight of the city above it, but transport people to and from their destinations. The body of a tree brings nutrients from the roots to the branches, which in turn are used to grow and produce fruits.
The body represents us; who we are as Christians. It is our very make up and through that is what produces fruit. And not just our body as individuals, but also as the body of believers. “But God has put the body together, giving greater honor to the parts that lacked it, so that there should be no division in the body, but that its parts should have equal concern for each other. If one part suffers, every part suffers with it; if one part is honored, every part rejoices with it. Now you are the body of Christ, and each one of you is a part of it.” 1 Corinthians 12:24-27. This is so important as followers of Christ because it shows that we are “the body of Christ” and without the foundation in Christ and in the Word, the body would fall apart and therefore cease to go on living. The body is what supports the fruit, and the roots are what support the body.
Branches. They are more important than we realize. Not only do they hold and bear fruit and vegetation, but the also filter dust and particles from the air. The branches are what “helps the tree breathe”. Something I have always loved about big trees with tall, wide branches is the shade it provides. The shelter that the branches provide from the sun or the rain is so amazing. When the roots are deep, the body is bigger, and will allow for more branches which, in turn, provide more shade for those in need.
This is another important part of our walk and who we are as followers of the Way. Think of it as an outreach; it is still founded on the Word of Christ, coming from the body of Christ, to reach out and provide “shade”, or truth, to those who are in need. And again, notice that the stronger the roots, the bigger the body, and the more branches which provides an abundance of shade and shelter. The deeper our roots are in Christ, the better we will be able to reach out and share the gospel with those who have never heard it before. “Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.” Matthew 28:19-20. We are called to share the word and live out our faith for all to see. “He said to them, ‘Go into all the world and preach the gospel to all creation.'” Mark 16:15. The branches, our bold outreach, will provide the knowledge of truth through the grace of the Holy Spirit.
Fruit/Vegetation. Something I have noticed is that fruit is not only beautiful, but it is one of the best sources of vitamins and nutrients. Now, something that I will share is we are coming into on of my Favorite seasons! Autumn, when the air is crisp and the colors are warm. But my favorite part of autumn is seeing the different colors in the leaves. It is absolutely amazing seeing the leave change into beautiful shades of reds, oranges and yellows. And when you have the trees drop fruits or seeds from the branches, they often grow new trees and plants.
“This is to my Father’s glory, that you bear much fruit, showing yourselves to be my disciples.” John 15:8. Fruit is all about the heart, and from that, comes our actions, our behavior. But what is the “fruit” that is being referred to here? Looking at Galatians 5:22, it outlines what the fruits of the Spirit are. “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law.” These are the fruits that Christians are called to bear. And in order for us to live our lives full of the fruits of the Holy Spirit, we must be deeply rooted in Christ and in His word. We cannot obtain these fruits apart from the Holy Spirit, so therefore we must be rooted in Him, with a sturdy and unbreakable foundation. “Likewise, every good tree bears good fruit, but a bad tree bears bad fruit. A good tree cannot bear bad fruit, and a bad tree cannot bear good fruit. Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. Thus, by their fruit you will recognize them.” Matthew 7:15-20. Fruits are also a good way to indicate and discern who is living their life for Jesus.
After the in depth correlation and explanation, what is there to take away from this? Well, let me ask you a couple questions; Are you rooted enough in the Lord that family, friends, temptation, and poor leadership cannot come between you and Him? Are you producing good fruit or is your fruit of a bad nature? When you look at your life, do you see yourself sharing the gospel and speaking the truth? In Mark, Jesus talks about the parable of the sower, which lays out different types of believers. Those who have deep roots and those who have no roots. It is important that we are rooted in Christ, because without Him, we will quickly be swept away by the trials and temptations of this world.
Absorb the rich supply in Christ and drink the living water that is given to us through Him. Read the scripture, pray through the Word, and take notes on it. Meditate on the Word day and night and allow it to be written on your heart. “Keep this Book of the Law always on your lips; meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do everything written in it. Then you will be prosperous and successful.” Joshua 1:8. Be a believer who is firmly rooted in Christ, with a strong body that supports the outreach which produces the fruits of the spirit. I desire to be like a strong tree, that stands strong and firm when the storms come and try to uproot it. If Christ is our foundation, our stronghold, through Him we WILL NOT be uprooted! He will keep us founded and keep us strong.
I pray that the Lord uses these words as something that will make it easier to understand what it means to be “rooted in Christ” and I pray that the Holy Spirit moves in ways that we cannot imagine. We are enabled by Christ and through Him, it is possible for us to grow strong, deep roots and produce fruit, shining Jesus’ light into the world and spreading the good Word to everyone. Have an amazing rest of your day everyone! God bless!