Daily Devotional

Hidden Roots

by Simon Whitton

7 "At least there is hope for a tree: If it is cut down, it will sprout again, and its new shoots will not fail.
8 Its roots may grow old in the ground and its stump die in the soil,
9 yet at the scent of water it will bud and put forth shoots like a plant.

Job 14:7-9 (NIV)

Much of a person's life is hidden from view; their thought life, values, desires, motives, even their faith and relationship with the Lord. These things belong to a person's heart, where their life springs from; and only the Lord sees the depths of our soul and spirit with clarity.

Our hearts are the 'roots' of who we are; the source from which we draw. This root system determines the health and vitality of our lives, the size of the tree, the strength of our limbs, the quality of our fruit, our resistance to pestilence, our ability to withstand drought. For these reasons it's important that we pay attention to our roots and the sources they're tapping into.

We may have a sense of what's going on in our hearts. What's going on 'above ground' can be an indication of this, but our root system is hidden from view. So it's a good idea to pray and ask the Lord to reveal our hearts as He sees them, and expose the real condition of our roots.

Sometimes we tap into a polluted source, and what we draw up affects every fiber of our being. We can't put roots into a bad source and expect that it won't affect the fruit we produce.

See to it that no one misses the grace of God and that no bitter root
grows up to cause trouble and defile many.

Hebrews 12:15 (NIV)

Bitterness can defile far beyond its root, and so can 'the love of money':

10 For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil. Some people, eager for money, have wandered from the faith and pierced themselves with many griefs.
11 But you, man of God, flee from all this, and pursue righteousness, godliness, faith, love, endurance and gentleness.

1 Timothy 6:10-11 (NIV)

Whatever we suspect is the source of trouble, we should flee those things and instead sink roots into the Lord.

Even if something devastating has happened in your life. So serious that it's like you've been cut down to a stump, and there's no fruit, no signs of life. Read the passage from Job once more. All you need is the scent of the Holy Spirit, the pure living water and you will spring to life again.

Spend a little time in prayer, and ask the Lord to reveal any bad roots in your life. Pray He might cut off all destructive roots, and instead you would find new sources in Him.

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