We have a particularly resilient ground cover growing in our front garden which, if left to it’s own devices, will soon take over the world. As part of my civic duty it has to be removed! Or at least brought under control.
So I’ve been weeding. And it’s been tough going. At first glance this plant appears to be little more than a network of leaves. All I have to do is follow the leaves to the roots and pull them out. Easy! Well… It wasn’t long before I discovered that the network of leaves above the ground is nothing compared to the complex root system below the ground. My troublesome plant obviously expends far more energy setting roots deep into the soil than it does producing leaves to cover the ground and soak up sunlight. It may not grow rapidly, but it grows steadily and purposefully and is very difficult to dislodge.
Every living organism - whether a plant, church, or an individual Christian - should expect to grow. And the little plant in my front garden provides a great model for the sort of growth we need to pursue. Jesus said to his disciples ‘the one who has no root lasts only a short time. When trouble or persecution comes because of the word, he quickly falls away (Matt 13:21). How different this is to the one who has set their roots deep into the bedrock of God’s Word and the truth of the gospel of Jesus.
Such a person will be able to stand through every trial and keep on growing.