Developing Deep Roots
by Buffi Taylor & Regina Pimentel, Women's Ministry Directors
In the current days, we find that our time looks different. We all have more time at home, even the essential workers who may still be going in to work. Once they are home they are not supposed to leave. One of the things we hear frequently is that people are spending more time in the garden or their yard.
Gina: I was working in the garden with my family and listening to instrumental praise music recently. As I was kneeling down pulling weeds, thinking about the Lord and praying, I noticed the way the root system spread and branched out. Sometimes it connected to another weed and other times it grabbed a huge ball of soil. This made me think of sin in our lives. Sometimes a sin can seem like such a small, trivial thing, not worth worrying about. But if we don't quickly repent of and confess even the smallest of sins, their spread is far-reaching, just like the roots of the weed. Sin rapidly spreads to other areas of life. It often grabs hold of other people, affecting them as well.
Buffi: I was also working in the garden with my family and listening to hymns and praise music. As I was weeding gravel on the side of the house, I noticed how easily the weeds were coming out of the ground in spite of the way their root system spread and branched. This made me think about Matthew 13 and the Parable of the Sower. The weeds sprang up on rocky ground, and as soon as they received a small amount of pressure (from me tugging on them) they were quickly uprooted. How fitting for this unprecedented time we are living in! We are facing pressures and trials most of us have never faced before. Will we be like those weeds and allow our faith to be uprooted? Or are our hearts good soil? Are we faithfully obeying and trusting in the Word?
As we were talking on the phone and sharing our similar thoughts from our gardens, it caused us to think about the requirement of repentance in deeply rooting in our faith. Along with knowledge of the Lord, prayer is an instrumental part of developing deep roots. Prayer aligns our hearts to His. Psalm 66 says "If I had cherished iniquity in my heart, the Lord would not have listened."
Unrepentance hinders our prayers! So then, what must we do?
- We must pray that the Lord would examine our hearts and reveal our sin to us, so that we can repent of our sin. “Search me, O God, and know my heart; Try me and know my anxious thoughts; And see if there be any hurtful way in me, And lead me in the everlasting way.” (Psalm 139:23-24)
- We must examine ourselves in light of the Scripture, to evaluate the quality of our faith. The measure of our obedience shows the depth of our faith.
John MacArthur states that, "Self-examination is simply the process by which we examine whether our faith is genuine and our repentance is real."
In these uncertain times we ought to be more cautious not to fall into sin or to weaken our trust in Him. Let us use our "extra" time to make sure the soil of our hearts is good soil, that we are walking in repentance and obedience and deepening the roots of our faith.