On Roots and Horticultural Metaphors

A lesson on roots. Adapted from a sermon given by a Korean preacher in a church in Mongolia:

“I have been growing flowers in my yard to prepare for our church’s anniversary celebration. I planted them in the soil and watered them for a few weeks before transplanting them into pots to bring to the church. I noticed that some of the plants had healthy roots and some had weak roots. Both kinds of plants were flourishing in my yard, because I had good soil there. When the plants with strong roots were transplanted, they continued to thrive even in new soil, because they had sturdy roots. Yet the plants with weak roots became frail in the new soil. These plants had been flourishing because of the soil they were in, not because they were strong themselves. Transplanting showed their weakness.”

“In the same vein, if you feel strong and healthy, you need to ask yourself: Am I strong because I have strong roots, or is it because I am in good soil, but my roots are weak?”

In a season of transience, as I am in a different city, it is useful to think on this question. I may be surrounded by good people, but am I myself rooted? Community is necessary, but the strengths of others can mask my weakness.

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