Grow Your Roots

By Marcy Barthelette


Don’t be ashamed if you suffer as one who belongs to Christ. Rather, honor God as you

bear Christ’s name. Give honor to God. I Peter 4:16

Here in the Ozarks, when you drive along highways where construction crews have drilled and blasted through layer upon layer of rock, you’ll likely see numerous cedar trees growing out of the cracks. How in the world can they do that? It’s a sheer rock face with an occasional tiny ledge. A seed must find its way to that ledge and land in a minuscule amount of soil, all deposited there by wind and water. While moisture typically seeps out of cracks and down the rock face, that moisture must find its way to the seed that lies in wait. Once the seed is touched by moisture and kissed by sunshine, a tiny tree sprouts, its roots burrowing into nearly invisible cracks, gathering moisture and nourishment along their way. Our local cedar trees require little to survive and soon their roots will travel deeper into the rock face to anchor the tree as it grows. I’ve seen some pretty large cedars clinging to those rock walls.

Lately, I’ve been feeling a little like a cedar tree, clinging to life on the side of a sheer rock wall. Worry over contracting the virus, the isolation from other people, wondering when or if a vaccine will be available to me, my country in political chaos with no end in sight, and many other countries around the world in similar straits, not to mention family health issues. These are taller mountains than I’ve ever encountered in my life, all coming at once, and I know that many of you share these same concerns. My roots are deep, I’m strongly anchored, but if something else changes and causes a few roots to break, my anchor could be weakened, and I could slide down that bluff a very long way to the bottom. For Christians, a fall from grace is indeed deep.

Therefore, get rid of all moral filth and the evil that is so prevalent and humbly accept word planted in you, which can save you. James 1:21

Fortunately, no matter how empty l may feel at any moment, I know that my anchor remains strong. My spirit keeps growing day by day, just like that tiny tree. My strength is found as I converse with God and He shows me how to turn away the evil that surrounds me and tries to drain the nourishment from my roots. There are days when I have to really struggle to hear His voice but that’s my fault, not His. Even when I’m too distracted by the world He is always there and He will meet me wherever I am. 

This week my “word well” felt completely dry but with patience and a willing ear, I finally heard Him speak and He told me I should share my fears and one big failure: pride in self. Back in April, when I started writing this weekly devotion, I thought I was doing it to help Casey and provide encouragement for you, that it was my calling, especially in these troubled times. Those are pretty lofty thoughts, aren’t they? But the Lord began to rein in my self-pride and I have come to realize that the messages are, in fact, intended for me because I have so much more to learn. I’ve come to treasure these life lessons, this spiritual healing, and if some of you receive a blessing from them along the way, that is the icing on the cake.

Rejoice in hope, be patient in tribulation….   Romans 12:12

Someone close to me recently said, “Spiritual healing is painful”. I ask you to consider the joy that always follows pain. We all need to dig a little deeper into our spiritual well, into God’s promises, and deeply into ourselves. With Him, we can find a spring that never runs dry. When you find yourself doubting and fear starts creeping into your soul, take some time to get away from everyone and reconnect with your roots, your anchor. And while you’re at it, recall the determination of that tiny cedar tree, one of God’s many signs that when we accept His will in our lives, we can do anything.

Never forget the three powerful resources you always have available to you:

love, prayer and forgiveness. H. Jackson Brown, Jr., author

Thank You, Lord, for the things that bring me closer to you. Buck Storm, Daily Guideposts 2021

One Response to “Grow Your Roots”


    Marcy, thank you so much for these inspirational messages. They mean a lot to me.

Leave a Reply