…that you, being rooted and grounded in love
Ephesians 3:17b, NKJV
The word thrive means to flourish or prosper, to bloom or blossom, to be healthy. If you had to examine your spiritual health today, what would be the results of the exam? If you sat down with Doctor Jesus, what would the spiritual physical results be?
God calls us out of darkness and vivifies our life, and provides all that we need to become fully developing believers. True Christianity is not praying a prayer one day and progressing to spiritual death. We are called to spiritual fervor and a passionate life in God.
Jesus addresses the need of abiding in Him in John 15. Paul addresses our need to be rooted and grounded here in Ephesians 3. David in Psalms 1 shows us how to flourish. Scripture is full of truth on becoming fully developing Christians.
Here is a summary of key components of the pathway to long-term spiritual health:
Psalm 1:3 “He shall be like a tree planted”
Planting comes from being “buried” in the Word of God. Our lives are saturated with the truth of the Word and sound doctrinal teaching and preaching. The nutrients of the Word of God and the ministry of the Word through a local church enrich and produce spiritual development.
To be rooted means to be firmly established, fixed, to have strong roots.
To be rooted implies planting in the Word of God, and being fixed in a local church, allowing your roots to spread out and be established.
Jeremiah 17:8 “Which spreads its roots by the river, and will not fear when heat comes”
This also signifies uprooting any obstacles that would hinder significant root growth. Scripture talks about a “root of bitterness,” as an example.
The Greek word in the context of Paul’s writing to the Ephesians for grounded implies having a firm foundation. This term is more of an architectural term versus horticulture, but makes the same point clear: we must be firmly established and rooted in the nature of God (“being rooted and grounded in love”); firmly established on His Word; and edifying one another as we gather together. Jesus made this point when sharing about the man who built his house on the sand, and the other man who had a firm foundation.
The process of growth does not end here, but truly just begins. To continually be in health, we must continue to grow, mature, and develop. We do not have babies and expect that once they are developing on their own we can leave them to continue without assistance. Even as adults we must continue on in health and nutrition, and seek the advice of professionals to continue in health. Spiritually, the same is true. We must continue to abide in Christ in all means possible to mature and flourish.