How rooted are you feeling today?
I mean “rooted” in a good way; rooted in the sense of being firmly established, resistant to the winds of life, and able to draw nourishment from the soils in which you currently stand.
We spent a lot of time in the sermon on Sunday morning (which you can listen to here) examining some botanical metaphors that are used in the Bible to describe our connections to God and to one another.
In Psalm 1 and again in John 15, you and I are described in metaphorical terms as being like a tree or a grapevine in that we are beings who receive true nourishment from connection with a source of vitality; specifically by being connected with the God who is fully revealed in Jesus Christ. This particular kind of nourishment enables us to bear fruit, to flourish, and to become rooted in Christ, even in the midst of the changing seasons of life.
This reality is one of the many reasons why our current congregational prayer ExperiLent is such a big deal. It is through two-way communication with God that we develop the varieties of roots that keep us connected to the source of our true nourishment in life. It is easy to feel like our sense of meaning and well being come from the circumstances of lives; our family’s health, our financial situation, how others feel about us, and so on. What Jesus teaches us is that he himself is the source of what we need most in this life in order to thrive and bear fruit.
If you have not yet found a partner with whom to pray regularly between now and Easter, let me encourage you to make that commitment today. You can find out more about this invitation and view a number of resources to support you in the endeavor on the First Pres website http://firstpresge.org/let-us-pray/.
The myth of the world is that you are alone and that you pray alone. The truth that Jesus describes in John 14 and builds upon from Psalm 1 is that we are not alone but that we are rooted to him and interconnected through him to one another.
Growing deep roots and growing strong in Jesus Christ is not a solo endeavor. You are called to be a part of an orchard, a forest, a vineyard, which Christ is feeding and growing to maturity. In the coming weeks, I pray that you will come to know this true nourishment more personally and will grow with others who are finding the same source of true life.
Grateful to be one branch alongside you in the vineyard of Jesus Christ,