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Friday, February 10, 2017

Roots in the sewer?

For his Spirit searches out everything and shows us God’s deep secrets. 11 No one can know a person’s thoughts except that person’s own spirit, and no one can know God’s thoughts except God’s own Spirit. 12 And we have received God’s Spirit (not the world’s spirit), so we can know the wonderful things God has freely given us. (I Corinthians 2:10-12 NLT)

Did you ever stop to really consider why it is we are given the Spirit of God as a teacher or guide in our lives? In looking at this passage again this morning, I realized it is so we can know the really intentional and purposeful thoughts of God - so we can really get to know him on an intimate basis. It is so true that the thoughts of one man's mind are known only to him - he has to share them in his words, actions, and attitude in order for us to even get a "hint" of what might be going on in that mind. In elementary school the kids used to taunt with the saying, "It takes one to know one", whenever someone pointed out some flaw in another person. Maybe there is just a little more truth to that than we might first like to admit!

I think of the mind as the place where roots take hold. Just as a tree is seen from the "surface up", most of the really important things we need to know about the tree are under the surface! The nice leaves and swaying branches are pretty and might bring us some enjoyment, but if the roots are having a hard time under the ground, or meddling in territory they should not be meddling in, that tree may look okay for a while, but eventually it will reveal what is underneath! Tree roots have to go deep - if too close to the surface and just sprawling out everywhere, the tree will topple when the winds come. Tree roots have both the potential to "take hold" and to be kind of "invasive" at times. We want them to have a good "hold", but we don't want them to be invading places they'd be best to stay out of in the first place!

A man's thoughts are known to that man until they are revealed by the evidence of what has "taken root" in the mind. If the mind lays out a rooting system that is too superficial, the actions of the man will be kind of wishy-washy and very scattered in focus. If the mind gets into territory it should not be in, the actions of the man will be destructive or unkind to whatever they come in contact with. If you have ever had a root system of a tree damage your water or sewer lines, you know exactly what I am trying to illustrate. We want the roots - we just don't want them to go where they aren't supposed to be!

We are given the Spirit of God to help us understand the mind of Christ and begin to see as he sees, act as he acts. We might have some "root thoughts" that need a little "uprooting". They have gone where they shouldn't have gone - so they are dabbling in things and places they have no business dabbling in as a believer. Until we allow God to reveal to us where those roots have taken hold, we will continue to act in ways that are destructive to our walk. God reveals his mind to us so that we know the specific "root system" we are to have in order to act as Christ acts. Back a few years ago, a phrase was all the rage in Christian circles: "What Would Jesus Do" or WWJD was everywhere. People wore bracelets with the WWJD lettering - others displayed it on bumper stickers and t-shirts. To really understand what Jesus would do, we need his mind! Just sayin!