What does it mean to be rooted in Jesus? The issue is pondered by Chicago pastor and Resurrection Band founder GLENN KAISER.

Glenn Kaiser
Glenn Kaiser

The other day my wife (Wendi) asked me to contact one of the brothers in our community who deals with the phone system. Her office phone had been smitten with a continual low-level buzz in the line. She tried moving the phone around the desk, tried two other phones on the same line, etc., but nothing seemed to squelch that annoying buzz! When I called the bro. in question, it turned out he was gone for the evening, but his wife had a thought as I mentioned what I was trying to reach her husband about. She told me that he had been summoned by another girl in the same office area for the same thing a while back. It turned out to be a matter of the "ground", or in British parlance, "earth". I have installed enough antennas on radios and such that I immediately began to laugh, telling her that I should have thought about such an obvious thing but the fact was that it hadn't crossed my mind until she mentioned it. Consider these verses in the book of Ephesians:"... so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith; {and} that you, being ROOTED and GROUNDED in love, may be able to comprehend with all the saints what is the breadth and length and height and depth, and to know the love of Christ which surpasses knowledge, that you may be filled up to all the fullness of God."(Eph. 3.17-19) Some Christians exhibit little or no spiritual maturity, blown about by shifting circumstances, at the mercy of their own emotions, unfulfilled expectations and desires. I would not argue that the cause is always this... but the fact is that many are not "rooted" nor "grounded" in love. When a tree has deep roots, it is stable, secure, steadfast. I recently received one of the most encouraging email messages ever.

Someone listed a number of things about my life that had on some level blessed them in their own walk with Jesus. It is unusual that people mention this particular trait, but he summed it up in the word "steadfastness". By God's grace I intend to continue to walk- yes in weakness, sinning at times, making mistakes and blundering certainly, but solidly TOWARDS and IN my Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ with my whole heart! Too many people profess to love Him, the church and the lost while living very inconsistently. One way to verbalize the problem is in their lack of roots and subsequent "grounding". To be rooted means to be fairly immovable. This is not to say that one will never be called to change jobs, churches or mission fields, etc., but the fact is that many in the church never allow God to plant them with deep ties in relationships at the local church level. They tend to shift from church to church, therefore relationship to relationship, rarely if ever allowing anyone to deeply know them. Therefore, they feel "safe" but in fact are anything BUT safe and secure. Many who carry on like this walk in fear, doubt and judgementalism rather than faith, hope and love. A basic solution to this is to pray, find a solid Bible-teaching fellowship and over time, actually "spill the beans" on one's weaknesses and needs. Too many Christians take to the road alone, then wonder why they feel so lonely! No roots, no grounding. Many who fit this description do indeed "buzz" in the far corners of the church. They tend to complain, criticize and moan at their lot in life rather than putting their hand to the plough in God's service. Because they tend to focus more on the exit ways than they do Jesus and the mission of the church, a number of areas never get sufficiently dealt with in their spiritual lives. Such "spiritual stunting" of one's growth leaves them in disarray, and all too often, they move on to the next "experience", thinking of life as a series of experiences rather than building and maintaining fidelity, loyalty and trustworthiness in biblical, godly, Christ-centered relationships. If love is anything at all, it's a genuine commitment that grows rather than fades, desires intimacy rather than independence with others sharing sunshine and sleet alike and proves dependable over the "long haul". God is like that, and His love is certainly like that! So... "rooted and grounded in love"- are you and l? As always, the Lord has the last word: "For you were called to freedom, brethren; only {do} not {turn} your freedom into an opportunity for the flesh, but through love serve one another."(Gal.5.13)

The opinions expressed in this article are not necessarily those held by Cross Rhythms. Any expressed views were accurate at the time of publishing but may or may not reflect the views of the individuals concerned at a later date.