Deepen Your Roots



I watched as my husband, Alex, navigated the excavator. This was a first for him, but he was determined. Using the backhoe he tried again and again to dig up the large chunks of root buried deep in the ground. Why was this so difficult? Well, the difficulty came in trying to dredge up roots the size of small tree trunks. Roots that gripped the depths of the earth like large claws.

He tried again and again and again. Nothing. Only frustration.

Dismounting from the excavator, he decided to do it the old fashioned way. With every swing of the pickaxe, he chipped away at the life-size infrastructure. I stood back amazed. Amazed at the determination of my husband, yes, but also at the size and depth of these roots. Had we not decided to landscape our backyard, this tree would have lasted forever! No strong wind or torrential storm would have swayed this tree’s sure foundation.

Then I began thinking about my relationship with God. How long would I be able to “stand strong?” How deep was I rooted in Christ? What outward manifestations proved the depth of my relationship with Him?

This tree had grown healthy. This tree rooted itself deep within the earth. This tree stood strong.

2 Peter 1:2 says, “Grace and peace to you many times over as you deepen in your experience with God and Jesus, our Master.” That’s The Message translation. I love the phrase “as you deepen in your experience with God …” But the ESV uses some wonderful language, as well. It says “May grace and peace be multiplied to you in the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord.”

That word “knowledge” in this passage refers to knowledge based on personal involvement or experience. It isn’t just head knowledge or information learned from a book. It’s knowledge based on relationship. So how does a person get this kind of knowledge about the Lord Jesus Christ? First, there must be a personal relationship with Him. The learner must, at some point, move from being a mere observer of Jesus to a participant in the Gospel through a personal encounter and surrender to Him.

After this, the believer must grow in her relationship with Jesus through intimate experience.

What does this look like? As she opens her Bible and reads, the Holy Spirit gives understanding. As she goes through difficulties, she learns to experience her Lord in a more real and meaningful way. As she interacts with other believers, she discovers the reality of who God is in the lives of others she encounters.

All of these real-life growth opportunities influence her life, and her roots grow deeper and deeper in the experiential knowledge and understanding of who Jesus is.

And then follow grace and peace. That’s what the verse says. Peter says, “Grace and peace to you many times over as you deepen in your experience with God and Jesus, our Master.”  As your relationship deepens, grace and peace multiply.

Grace is the divine influence upon the heart, and its reflection in a person’s life. To translate, that means that as Christ influences the heart of a believer (as they experience Him, seek Him, and surrender to Him), He begins to change that person from the inside out and she begins to look and act more and more Christ-like.

Peace! Who doesn’t want to experience a freedom from turmoil, strife, and war? Who doesn’t want rest and tranquility? Everyone desires peace. But wait. Does this mean believers have an “easy life” free from heartache and trials? Quite the opposite is actually true. Jesus said in John 16:33, “I have said these things to you, that in me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation. But take heart; I have overcome the world.” I emphasized the “in me” because that’s the key. In Christ we have peace, not in our circumstances.

Here’s the bottom line. The more we deepen our roots and experience Christ, the more grace and peace we receive. The more grace and peace we receive, the more rooted we are in Him.

What do you need today, my friend? Are you in need of a relationship with Jesus? Do you have that, but need to dig deeper into His Word so you can begin to experience Him in a more intimate way? Perhaps you need grace to help you face a situation with more Christ-likeness. Are you running on empty, weighed down by the turmoil of your circumstances? If so, maybe peace is what you need.

You will find all of these life needs, and more, as you deepen your roots securely in Christ. Dig deep, my friend. Grow in the grace of Jesus today!

“Therefore, as you received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk in him, rooted and built up in him and established in the faith, just as you were taught, abounding in thanksgiving.” – Colossians 2:6-7