When I was growing up the emphasis in the church was on being rooted and grounded in the Word of God. We do need to meditate on the Word, let the Word of God dwell in us richly but the term rooted and grounded is used only once in Scripture, in Paul’s letter to the Ephesians and he wasn’t talking about the Word. He’s talking about something that is so important in the Body of Christ but often gets overlooked.
In Ephesians 3:17-19 Paul prays, That Christ my dwell in your hearts by faith; that you, being rooted and grounded in love may be able to comprehend with all the saints what is the width and length and depth and height; and to know the love of Christ which passes knowledge, that you may be filled with all the fullness of God.
The first thing he mentions is the need to have Christ dwelling on our hearts by faith and that is followed by the astonishing statement that you may be rooted and grounded in love. .What does that mean and how does that happen? God is love. As we allow Him access to more of our lives, our activities and even our thoughts, it will result in more of His love flowing through us. God lives within us in order that His love will be lived out in our lives. Love must be our ultimate goal.
The next part of Paul’s prayer is even more intense. That you might have power, together with all the saints, to grasp how wide and how long and high and deep… is the love of Christ. Does that mean I have to love the saints in order to completely comprehend the width, length, depth and height (which are all immeasurable) of the love of Christ? One thing builds upon another in our spiritual lives and if one part is missing, like love, the other parts are not as effective as they should be. I Corinthians teaches us that without love all our learning and doing is worthless.
The world was astonished, several years ago, during on Olympic cross-country ski event when a skier broke a pole. One of her competitors lost seconds off her own time to replace the pole. What a great example of love. Do we rush ahead with our own agenda ignoring others who have needs?
The Lord spoke to me very strongly about this a few years ago. We were praying fervently that the Lord would bless the spiritual agenda being planned and into my mind the Lord dropped the faces of fellow Christians who were struggling with love and acceptance. Then He said to me, together with all the saints. ‘No one left behind’ is a phase heard in the military and even in the Scouting program. Paul is saying that needs to happen in the church too.
The last part of Paul’s prayer should make us catch our breath. That you my be filled with all the fullness of God. Does that mean that the fullness of God in my life is in direct relation to the love of Christ being lived out in my life? That sounds a lot like forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us.
What an amazing concept. We build up the Body of Christ by loving one another, by building up one another. Lord, overwhelm all of us with your love!