Series: The Creed | The Prayer
Give Us THIS Day (The Gathering Worship)
September 12, 2021 | Rev. Laura Parker
Passage: Matthew 6:25-34
As you therefore have received Christ Jesus the Lord, continue to live your lives in him, rooted and built up in him and established in the faith, just as you were taught, abounding in thanksgiving.
…do not boast over the branches. If you do boast, remember that it is not you that support the root, but the root that supports you.
The image of a root is an effective metaphor that is used frequently in both the Old and New Testaments. In a positive light, it often refers to the depth of God’s love or righteousness. In other cases, it describes the cause of a regrettably unfruitful outcome. Whether evoked by the prophets, the apostles, or Jesus himself, a warning against being ‘uprooted’ or having shallow roots is a matter of grave concern.
The common theme of the Bible is that no one grows without roots; not deep, or tall, or strong. At some point in our spiritual adolescence, we might be able to convince ourselves that our roots are holding us down or keeping us from moving forward. In reality, however, the exact opposite is true. Becoming untethered is not a sign of freedom.
Then again, remaining connected without bearing fruit is no more acceptable. To settle for such a stale existence would be a far cry from the life of abundance to which Jesus calls us. As John the Baptist cautioned those in danger of complacency, “even now the ax is lying at the root of the tree…” (Mt. 3:10)
The ancient church was founded on basic biblical teachings and practices like the Ten Commandments, baptism, the Apostles’ Creed, The Lord’s Supper, the Lord’s Prayers and corporate worship. These basics of the Christian life have sustained and nurtured every generation of the faithful. They apply equally to old and young, men and women, pastors and church members.
Here at Fairhope UMC, we believe that we need the wisdom of the communion of saints. They broaden our perspective beyond our current culture and time. Thus we are excited to begin a new series of preaching and teaching in which we will be ‘digging in’ to two particular roots of the faith—the Apostle’s Creed and the Lord’s Prayer.
Our hope in this offering is plain, but nonetheless profound.
Keep us grounded, Lord!