Tag Archive | Roots

I’ll Choose Purple Every Time!

Lowes-Paint-Color[1]Are you prejudice?

Kind of an odd way to start out I know…. but it is a fair question considering what all is going on in our little world today.

Prejudice definition:  preconceived opinion that is not based on reason or actual experience.

Blacks… Whites….
Gays…. Straight…..
Christians….. Muslims….
Democrat….. Republican….
Death….. Life…..
Broncos….. Chiefs…..
In….. out…..
Right….. Left…..
Up….. Down…..
Pink…… Purple…..

….. and that is just the tip of the iceberg of things we have “preconceived opinions” about.

I remember when my boys were babies and I would take them different places…. or even just show their latest pictures.   Depending on the group I was around… almost always determined the outcome of the conversation of which parent they looked like.    If the majority of friends or family had known their father the longest…. they “look just like his daddy”   ….. but…. on the other hand…. if they were mostly my family or friends I had known the longest…. well what do you know….. they thought they “look just like their mommy!”

Now HOW can one baby….. the exact same baby…. look just like their daddy and just like their mommy!?!?!?

Well…. lets blame it on that preconceived opinion thing!   The truth is, when we get right down to the bottom line of it…. each person was biased…. prejudiced…. so to speak in their opinion.   Their opinion wasn’t based on careful observation…. but in reality it had been swayed by their desire to tip the scale toward the one they were most loyal to….. or… the one that would also boost favor toward themselves.    I mean who wouldn’t want to brag to everyone that this beautiful baby boy got most …. if not all their good looks from “my” side of the family….. or “my” best friend?”

Some …. however did try to look past the preconceived opinions…. and really try to discern the features on actual “facts”.   Most times they would end up saying something to the effect of….. “well…. his hair color is the same as….. and I think he has your….. but he definitely has his dads…….    Truth was… they were a perfect mish-mash of both …. mommy and daddy…. making them then…. unique and special.

When it comes to choosing a color….. My favorite has always been purple for as long as I can remember!   I’m not sure what it is about purple that I like… other than it just gives me that happy feeling when I see it.  It brings a smile to my face and joy to my heart….and well….. it just makes me go…… awwwwweeeeeee….. !!   So…. with that said…. if there is ever a color option for me to choose… pretty much anytime my pick will lean to the various shades of purple if at all possible!   You could say … I am prejudice in my choice of color because I have had preconceived opinions that are already formed because of my personal feelings.

Deeper issues…. such as Political…. Race…… Religion…..can and have … been the basis of conflict which has caused division and discord among family, friends, colleagues…. and even nations!

How did we form some of these “preconceived opinions?”    Many were formed in us simply by being born into certain family’s.  For generations some ideals were accepted somewhere in our family tree and passed on to generation to generation and have formed some mighty deep and sturdy roots.   Most things passed down to us from our ancestors are totally irrelevant and harmless….. some however…. can be quite the contrary … making us indeed….. narrow minded… bigoted…. and yes…. Prejudiced .   Trying to remove those roots can be a major excavation project.    The process could be very costly… not only in a monetary way…. but it could cost jobs… friendships… social acceptance as well as family relationships.    Roots … as we well know… can go deep…..DEEP into the earth and spread in every direction touching many things as well as people.  Most times we would never know who or what could be affected…. until those roots are tampered with or begin to come to the surface.

Other opinions are formed….. or changed….. by the group of friends we begin to hang around with, as we grow into our own person.   If our generational roots have not grown as deep and strong … or if we have chosen to rebel and sever those roots… our opinions can take on the form of those people we surround ourselves with.   There again… not always a bad thing… depending on the subject matter it could actually be a better thing.  Even very controversial issues can take us on a new life journey, and as long as those opinions do not invade someone else’s opinions…. by sucking life out of their roots, we can all still live side by side and get along.   Many new opinions are formed simply because of selfish ambitions.   They have swayed our directional thinking so we can “fit in” with a person or group that will take us to bigger, better and higher places, without giving them any real thought, consideration, research or prayer time.

Many of these issues could be solved in this world if we would just stop and discern every issue we face in a totally unbiased manner …. unfortunately…. most of us already have those “preconceived opinions” tucked down so deep inside of us we probably don’t even recognize they are there.   When asked… are you prejudice???   ….. We automatically get on the defensive side and deny any such thing because that would mean we are narrow minded…. bigoted….mean spirited and just plain rude.  We try to come up with many reasons to defend ourselves….. to justify our reasoning’s and some could be justifiable while others…. well… they just wouldn’t hold water ….much like a bucket with holes in it!

Being prejudice TOWARDS things …. are one thing …. being prejudice AGAINST people is an entirely different story!
We are ALL important to God…. He said in His Word
….For God shows no partiality [undue favor or unfairness; with Him one man is not different from another]. Romans 2:11 (Amp)
and again …
Then Peter replied, “I see very clearly that God shows no favoritism.   Acts 10:34 (NLT)

God Never in His Word ever made reference to skin color as a basis of blessings… favoritism….entry to Heaven…. exclusion from Hell….
in fact V 35 of Acts continues by saying
In every nation he accepts those who fear him and do what is right.
In fact … one of the Greek definitions of the word “nation” in this verse is “RACE”
so
…. We could say… In every RACE he accepts those who fear Him and do what is right!!!
So many times through out the Word of God…..God said….. ALL….  and in case we are not sure the definition of the word … Websters definition .. copied and pasted is….

Simple Definition of all

  • : the whole, entire, total amount, quantity, or extent of

  • : every member or part of

  • the whole number or sum of

Like they say…. ALL means……there ain’t no more!!!

But then again…… Matthew 24:7-7 says talking about the signs of the end…..
Nation will go to war against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. There will be famines and earthquakes in many parts of the world.  But all this is only the first of the birth pains, with more to come.

That same word… Nation…. “Race”…. says Race will go to war against race….. one of the end time signs….that is most definitely coming to pass right before our eyes!!!
Even though the media continues to stir this pot….We do not have to be a participant!  We Can choose to Love!   Love like Jesus did…. color blind!
…..The Lord doesn’t see things the way you see them. People judge by outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart.”   1 Samuel 16:7
It’s whats INSIDE that counts!

So…. if you have found yourself in a place where you might have to answer the question…. Are you Prejudice?…. with a yes….. Stop and ask yourself…. and God…. why do I have this issue?
Where and when were these preconceived ideas formed…. and then… Repent…. and ask God to continue to change your heart.   Ask Him to open your eyes to see past color… Race… Religion….He is big enough to do it….. the question I guess though….. but… Are YOU big enough to change it?

When we begin to Love like He Loves…we will see Revival break out in our lives… our church… our community…. and in our Country!   It starts with you…. it starts with ME!
Lets keep our prejudice ideas to the little things…. and remember….. ALWAYS choose PURPLE!!!

Rooted …. In The Word

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This summer as I was traveling to work ….. again…. another tree caught my eye.   This tree was on the side of the road….. leaning… with many of its roots sticking up out of the ground.  The thing about this tree however, was it was still …. very much alive!  It was very green and full of life…. with no signs of  it beginning to die.
Even though ….. it wasn’t standing straight…. even though…. many of its roots were above ground and ripped away from the earth…..
Even though …..something …. or MANY things …. had made it to topple over…. it simply refused to give up.   Refused to die.   It still had enough roots…. or maybe only one…. root…. that was still hanging on to the life-giving soil and water source to keep it fed!

I have no idea how long it has been that way.  I do know however, that I had seen it for several weeks before God prompted me to stop and take the photo.

He then began to  remind me how this tree compared to our Christian Life.

This tree….more than likely…. stood tall…. stood straight and strong for many years.  It has lived through many years of seasonal changes that brought with it the wind and rain of spring and fall….. the snow, sleet and ice of winter … and the scorching sun of summer.  Through it all… it stood.  It flourished in good weather…. and rode out the bad.
Over the years… however…. the constant “beating” it took eventually began to wear it down to the point of it being “knocked over.”  Something came with a big enough force to knock that tree on its side.    Many trees with the same circumstances would have withered away.  But THIS tree…. had roots that went deep!  Roots…that were anchored into the soil….connected firmly to the life-giving source hidden deep underground….. kept this tree…. alive and thriving!

Our life …. like that tree…. can sometimes be hard.  For most of our life we may be able to stand tall and stand strong.   But… over the seasons of our lives…..many things come at us to knock us down.  We can weather the storms of life pretty good for the most part.  The small set backs and disappointments…..the sicknesses…. lack.   We flourish in the good times…. and we ride out the bad as best we can.  But some things….are big!   Big things that come at us to really try our faith!  Storms that beat on us relentlessly trying to knock us over…. to disconnect us from our life source….and take our life.
But…
If we have good roots….roots that have been planted firmly in good soil….watered …so our roots grow deep…. deep down to our life source….then no matter what comes our way…. we will always live…. and thrive!

Mark 4:13-20 Then Jesus said to them, “If you can’t understand the meaning of this parable, how will you understand all the other parables?   The farmer plants seed by taking God’s word to others.   The seed that fell on the footpath represents those who hear the message, only to have Satan come at once and take it away.   The seed on the rocky soil represents those who hear the message and immediately receive it with joy.   But since they don’t have deep roots, they don’t last long. They fall away as soon as they have problems or are persecuted for believing God’s word.   The seed that fell among the thorns represents others who hear God’s word,   but all too quickly the message is crowded out by the worries of this life, the lure of wealth, and the desire for other things, so no fruit is produced.   And the seed that fell on good soil represents those who hear and accept God’s word and produce a harvest of thirty, sixty, or even a hundred times as much as had been planted!”

Jeremiah 17:7-8 [Most] blessed is the man who believes in, trusts in, and relies on the Lord, and whose hope and confidence the Lord is.  For he shall be like a tree planted by the waters that spreads out its roots by the river; and it shall not see and fear when heat comes; but its leaf shall be green. It shall not be anxious and full of care in the year of drought, nor shall it cease yielding fruit.

Collossians 2:6-7 And now, just as you accepted Christ Jesus as your Lord, you must continue to follow him.  Let your roots grow down into him, and let your lives be built on him. Then your faith will grow strong in the truth you were taught, and you will overflow with thankfulness.

 

 

ROOTS

Roots….
Years ago I had decided to go dig up a Yucca plant and transplant it in my yard.    I thought they were the coolest plants that always stayed green, and they had that stalk of pretty white flowers that shot up in the middle of it during the summer.   They seemed to be a hardy plant and surely I wouldn’t or couldn’t kill it, so, off to the side of the road I went with my trusty little shovel.

Oh My Goodness!     I had no idea what I had gotten myself into …..!                  I dug …. and pulled…. and dug…. And pulled… I twisted and I tugged and I ….. gave up on that one!

I found a smaller one and tried again….. TRIED…… and FAILED…..
Then…. I had a thought!!!!
I saw some growing at an angle by the railroad tracks!     Now….If I could just go at that thing at an angle and kind of just shave it off that should be a lot easier….right?….Wrong!

I still …dug….. and pulled ….and dug…. and pulled…..I twisted and I tugged …. And FINALLY ….. success!!!!     One small Yucca in my hand …. Ready to be a new addition to my yard.

What started out as a supposedly simple task had taken most of my afternoon.     I not only walked away with a much smaller Yucca plant than I had initially sought after…. But, I also had some very sore muscles, some major blisters on my hands plus cuts from the sharp leafs of the Yucca plant.     But…. I was happy….!    I got my Yucca!!!!

Now… I had to dig a hole to plant it in!
After digging my hole, I had to carry a few buckets of water from the back yard since I didnt have a hose,  to make sure it had soft wet soil for those roots that I had just disturbed, to begin to make that new spot their home.

For several weeks I made sure the ground stayed moist so all that hard work would not be lost in vain and my new little Yucca die from lack of water.    I would venture to say, that If I were to take a trip out to the spot where I planted that Yucca….. it would more than likely still be there….alive and well….. Still green…. and for the record….. I would NOT have a desire to dig it up and bring it home with me.

The roots of a Yucca are amazing!
I thought of those roots when I did a lesson on unforgiveness when the Author of the book  I was reading said that unforgiveness was the “root” of hate….
What I then saw in my mind was this:

When someone has done us wrong…we have a choice to make… to forgive… or not to forgive… it really is just that simple you know…. A choice!

If we choose not to forgive… what we usually do then is to dwell on that offense.
We have PLANTED that offense in our minds… and now… we begin to WATER  it….
We rehearse those conversations over and over in our minds….WATER
We relive the act that was done to us….WATER…… we sometimes even share our offense with one….two….three…. EVERYONE.     We find ourselves thinking about it all the time!

What happens when you water a seed?    Roots begin to grow…!    In our minds we water those thoughts…. Those roots begin to grow…. And grow…. Down … down…. They are headed towards our hearts!    And… just like that Yucca plant… when those roots get to your heart…. They wrap themselves tightly around and in your heart…

The Word says out of the abundance of your hear does the mouth speak (Matthew 12:34)

When we have unforgiveness in our “minds” and we don’t let it go….it gets “rooted” in our hearts…. And when “rooted” in our “heart”….. It turns to ”hate” ….and when it turns to “hate” ….well…. God said in 1 John 3:15… that anyone who hates his brother is (at heart) a murderer….WOW!!!

I know how hard it is to get all the roots of unforgiveness out of my mind!    Been there… done that…but.. like that Yucca plant…. It is much … MUCH harder to get a well established root out of a place that has been well watered.

Can it be done? YES!!!

Is it easy? NO!!!

Is it worth it? OH YEAH!!!!

But……
I think the next time I want to plant a Yucca in my yard… I am going after the little one!
The one that hasn’t had a lot of time to grow… one that I can easily pluck up before the roots have gotten too deep ;~)