I’m currently dog sitting for a very handsome Chocolate Labrador. He belongs to my aunt who is currently on a vacation in Sydney. So I am sitting in her front room, with this lovely dog at my feet, binge watching Elementary on her TV.
This lovely dog requires a total of 4 walks a day: 3 short walks and 1 long walk. The long walk has the most beautiful scenery and as been an incredible source of inspiration for me every day.
There are some incredible trees along the walk, and a beautifully picturesque canopy. You would never know that you were just a stone’s throw from the M25 – well, except for the sound.
Several times during the walk, you would need to negotiate around tree roots – where the path has been so worn, the roots have become visible. It makes for a beautiful addition to an already stunning public footpath.
As I took in the sights of the tall trees with thick trunks, and their stretching, long roots passing across the path – I reflected on how this is mirrored in my relationship with God.
In order to grow tall – to my full potential – my roots need to be deep and strong. Trees that have shallow roots fall, they bend when the slightest wind blows their way, they don’t grow to their full potential.
If my roots are shallow and something bad happens to me, I could be easily uprooted – torn up before I’ve hit my stride – in the same way a storm could uproot a tree with shallow roots. I would never flourish – my branches wouldn’t bear flowers or fruit, I wouldn’t grow up to my potential.
I would also need to be careful what I root myself in to. Much like the parable of the wise and foolish builders, the story of which can be found in the pages of the New Testament of the bible. Jesus teaches us using stories to illustrate what he meant – and these are recorded in the first 4 books of the New Testament part of bible (Matthew, Mark, Luke and John).
In this particular parable, Jesus tells us that there are two options when you’ve heard the good news about him – you become a builder, building up your life, and the foundation you choose is the crux of the matter, or for the sake of this blog, where you choose to plant your roots. You can be like the foolish builder, and ignore the teachings of Jesus, and don’t put them into practice and build your house on the sand. Or you can take the teachings of Jesus, allow your actions, thoughts – your being – to be rooted into them, and be like the wise builder who built his house on the rock.
What’s the difference? When the rain comes down, the streams rise and the winds blow and beat against your house will it fall, or will it stand? If your foundation, or your roots, are not strong enough -whether you are a tree or a house, you will fall. However if your foundation, or roots, are connected with the rock that is the word of God, you will find the no storm or flood will damage you – no matter how hard it comes at you.
Life hurts – believe me, I know. But depending on where you lay your roots – on the outside you might well become battered and bruised, but if your roots run deep in the right soil, your tree will weather the storm.
In a previous blog, I said my New Year’s Resolution is to read Anna Karenina and Les Miserables and other classics that I feel I should have read by now. But I want to make another resolution – my blogs are often about the character of God and how I live my life with Jesus, however I don’t feature much actual scripture. So my resolution is to devote myself to my bible more this year, to help with my blog writing, so I can point to scripture more often, and deepen my roots in God’s word, as the parable above tells me to.
You can read the parable I have used above here.