I have long been fascinated by tree roots, and my love of hiking has often brought me to places where I have seen unique root systems. Never, however, had I seen one quite as interesting as the one I was privileged to see along the trail towards Uisge Ban Falls near Baddeck, Nova Scotia.
The tree, for all practical purposes, appeared to be growing right out of the top of that enormous boulder. There is no soil, no ground cover, just bare rock with a tree growing at the top.
How does this particular tree get its nutrients?
Three primary roots are anchored around the boulder, straddling it from three primary supportive angles. With this root system wrapping around that gigantic and solid boulder, that tree has withstood the tests of water, snow, ice, wind and time. Unlike its sister trees of the forest, whose roots are subject to erosion, this particular tree’s foundation will never erode, for it is grounded on the solid rock.
This reminds me of a parable Jesus told: “Everyone then who hears these words of mine and does them will be like a wise man who built his house on the rock. And the rain fell, and the floods came, and the winds blew and beat on that house, but it did not fall, because it had been founded on the rock. And everyone who hears these words of mine and does not do them will be like a foolish man who built his house on the sand. And the rain fell, and the floods came, and the winds blew and beat against that house, and it fell, and great was the fall of it.” (Matt. 7:24-27 ESV).
When we build our lives on the “Rock”, Jesus Christ (“The LORD is my rock and my fortress and my deliverer, my God, my rock, in whom I take refuge, my shield, and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold.” Ps. 18:2), we become like that tree with its root system completely straddling that boulder: We become solidly anchored against the winds of circumstances, the rains of temptation, the ice of addictions, the snows of trials.
What is it you are facing right now? Don’t face it with your roots only anchored in the soil of this world. Grow your spiritual roots around the Rock, anchor yourself to Jesus, and you will know the peace and the comfort and the encouragement that Jesus has promised us during the trials and temptations of life.
The important thing to remember, however, is that the tree hadn’t just that moment grown that extensive root system; rather it had spent a lifetime anchoring itself to that rock. We, also, must not just turn to Jesus in our time of need; but rather, we need to make a lifetime out of anchoring ourselves to Him, for when we do, we will be prepared to weather whatever storms this life throws our way.
Why not start “anchoring” yourself firmly to Jesus today? If you need help knowing how to do this, pleaseemail me for some practical suggestions!
In His love,
Lynona Gordon Chaffart, Speech-Language Pathologist, mother of two, Author — “Aboard God’s Train — A Journey With God Through the Valley of Cancer”, Author and Moderator for The Nugget, a tri-weekly internet newsletter, andScriptural Nuggets, a website devoted to Christian devotionals and inspirational poems, withAnswers2Prayer Ministries. Follow Lyn on Twitter @lynchaffart.
(To access the entire “Lessons From Cape Breton” mini-series, please click here.)