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09-02-01 Roots

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Roots—What are You Drawing Life From?

A Lifestyle of Prayer: Part 1                                            February 1, 2009

Matthew 13:5-6,20-21 & Ephesians 3:16-19              Pastor Jeff Bassette

(Jesus Christ)  “No branch can bear fruit by itself; it must remain in the vine.  Neither can you bear fruit unless you remain in me…apart from me you can do nothing.”  (John 15:4-5)

Matthew 13:5-6 & 20-21

Ø  Roots are ___________ but _______________.

Ø  Roots receive _________________ and give that away.

Ø  Roots can ______________ or _________________.

(Psalm 1)                      (1 Tim. 6:10, Heb. 12:15)

Ephesians 3:16-19

God’s heart, for our good, is that we’d experience life…



Guidance for slides.  You’ll receive an image of roots from Nate See. Different from one I use in outline. Let’s use Nate’s image on screen, in backgrounds, wherever we can.  Probably can put title text below on this image as your background image for the ppt slide.  I’d like to get as much mileage from Nate’s image as we can.  Try to include it either as background for all ppt slides, or include a smaller icon of that image in a corner of all your ppt slides.  Something like that.  That way it has a unifying look and feel to all the slides of the message.

Slide: Roots—What are You Drawing Life From?

(title superimposed onto Nate’s image of roots, with background being Nate’s image)

Slide:  John 15:4-5 as on outline

 Slide:  matthew 13:5-6 text

Slide:  Matthew 13:20-21 text

Ø  Roots are _tender__ but __powerful___.

Ø  Roots receive _life from the soil__ and give that away.

Ø  Roots can _protect__ or _destroy______.

                                        (Psalm 1)              (1 Tim. 6:10, Heb. 12:15)

Slide:  1 tim 6:10

Slide:  Heb 12:15

Slide: Ephesians 3:16-19

God’s heart, for our good, is that we’d experience life…

  __being rooted in the love of Christ__.

Roots—What are You Drawing Life From?

A Lifestyle of Prayer: Part 1,         February 1, 2009,   Matt 13:5-6,20-21 & Ephes 3:16-19             

Talk about relationship w/Jesus, Don’t lose sight of motivating people to pray, to spend time w/Jesus, their need for Him. Be loved by him, changed / healed, value apart from what they do.   

INTRO:   Contrast yesterday at JJ’s water polo game.  If ever want to be intimidated about the physical shape and conditioning of your body, go to an upper level Southern Calif water polo competition.  Slabs of perfectly cut men’s bodies, broad shoulders, lean at waist, six pack abs.  To many young women, guys like that “perfect cut of beef”J  Bodies shaped through hours and hours of training, to cut through water, exercise control and mastery of skills for game.

        But apart from watching my son play and compete, and cheering on his team, what drew my attention was a young woman who possessed none of these qualities.  Hard to tell how old she was (teens to early 30’s), in special kind of wheel chair with full head brace.  Cerebral palsy young woman, vs. water polo shaped bodies of perfect health and mastery—this twisted body not able to do most of things we’d normally consider useful, utility, productivity.

       But was a man there, who didn’t seem to care about any of that.  Looked like father, just held her hand and as she rocked back and forth, and made noises, his hand rocked with hers, and he moved his head up close in some form of communication, connection, tenderly, so lovingly. Father and daughter, perhaps picture and reminder that at core of our lives, our value not found in what we do or produce but who we are.  We are loved.  At core, we’re relational.

TRANS:    This is helpful reminder when it comes to prayer.  Icon of prayer.  Reminds us of sthg true about God, source of all things.  One from whom every Father on earth gets his name. 

          We’re so conditioned by our culture, by drive to perform and succeed and achieve, we don’t even realize way it influences us when we relate to God.  When we pray.  We can twist prayer so quickly into set of skills/techniques to get what we want, to gain “control” over situations spinning out of our control.  It becomes:  7 Habits of Highly Effective Prayer Warriors, etc…    As start this series on prayer, I want remind us prayer is first a/b relationship.

          Father and daughter remind us of this.  Apart from “praying with power”, or “how to pray for persons xyz, or situations abc”--

Jesus knew his own Father in this kind of intimate, tender way.  Father could hold his hand, comfort him. 

TRANS:   Power of God DID flow through Jesus’ life in unhindered way.  He asked for extraordinary, impossible things in prayer, and His Father answered those prayers. 

But Jesus makes it clear it wasn’t his techniques in prayer that yielded such power.  It was his relationship with God that was source of his power. 

Now Jesus does talk about prayer and bearing fruit for God, how do it.  Got stay connected to him.  Reminder of our dependence on God to produce for God. 

(Jesus Christ)  “No branch can bear fruit by itself; it must remain in the vine.  Neither can you bear fruit unless you remain in me…apart from me you can do nothing.”  (John 15:4-5)

Matthew 13:5-6 & 20-21

TRANS to Body 1:       When talking about prayer, talking about inner life.  Hidden life.

à Image:  roots.             (Image Jesus uses to describe our inner life, ways we respond to G.)

5 Some fell on rocky places, where it did not have much soil. It sprang up quickly, because the soil was shallow. 6 But when the sun came up, the plants were scorched, and they withered because they had no root. (Matthew 13:5-6)


20 The one who received the seed that fell on rocky places is the man who hears the word and at once receives it with joy. 21 But since he has no root, he lasts only a short time. When trouble or persecution comes because of the word, he quickly falls away.  (Matthew 13:20-21)

ILLUS:  Q: Which is stronger, this?  (drop chunk concrete on table)   Or this?  (grass w/roots)

A:  Concrete stronger but over time, grass w/roots can break up concrete, wedges itself right into fault lines, weak spots of least resistance

          Like that with us.  If we not careful, little things we allow in our hearts, inner life, over time those seemingly small little roots, that we’re sure we’ve got control over, can break our lives apart right at the fault lines, the vulnerable spots in our character, little compromises.

          Addiction/losing family over time.

Ø Roots are _tender__ but __powerful___.

TRANS:    Another thing true about roots.  They don’t possess in themselves what they need.

Ø Roots receive _life from the soil__ and give that away.

ILLUS:  Ask if there’s any woman in room who needs encouragement, or man who knows his wife does, and who enjoys flowers.  Choose one to come up.   Have them stand facing you, with side to congregation, holding potted flower.  Then Jeff cut with monster scissors, hold cut plant itself (wait for gasp from audience), then ask:  “What?”   and “Is this alive or dead?”

à Point is:  it’s dying.  

à Then give another potted plant to her/him.

à And offer special one to Harmonie:  most unselfish person I know.


Plant in good, healthy soil, will grow healthy and will mature.   Most plants like loose soil, that allows room for roots to spread out and grow.  Plant will absorb whatever in soil.  If nutrients it needs to stay healthy are not in soil, plant won’t have them, b/c roots can’t receive what ISN”T there.  That’s why we fertilize.

Flip side also true.  If soil unhealthy, poisons in the soil, that poison will seep into the plants themselves.  Why we have strict laws on environmental clean up, and disposal.  Takes while, but over time it does show up and infects growth/health of entire plant.

Our lives like this.  All of us have roots in our lives, we plant them in different kinds of soil.  And we all drawing life from something.  Some kind of soil.  What you drawing life from?   Is it…God, good friends, prayer, the bible, obedience and faith…or other things? 

IF we want to minister to deep places in people’s lives, we’ve got guard deep places in our own.  If we want to minister freedom and health to people at roots of their pains and wounds, then we need be sure the roots of our own life are drawing life from the right things.  That our lives are planted, rooted, in things of God, purposes of God.  Heart and grace of God.

Again, that’s why Jesus could touch so powerfully the deepest places in lives of people he met, heal people to core of their being, know them at deepest level.

TRANS:     Bible talks about this reality both ways.  Roots of plants that sink down into healthy places, vs. unhealthy places.

Ø Roots can __protect__ or __destroy___.

(Psalm 1)     (1 Tim. 6:10, Heb. 12:15)

Psalm 1—tree planted by streams of water, roots nourished, bears fruit in season

1 Tim—love of money is root of all kinds evil,  Heb 12:  careful no root bitterness

Ephesians 3:16-19

God’s heart, for our good, is that we’d experience life…_being rooted in the love of Christ__.

16 I pray that out of his glorious riches he may strengthen you with power through his Spirit in your inner being, 17 so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, 18 may have power, together with all the saints, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, 19 and to know this love that surpasses knowledge—that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God.


Quiet Response Time:  (with instrumental background)—Call people to pray. 

Perhaps repent.  Perhaps praise.  Ask HS to teach you sthg, how pray.  Rest in His love.

Pastoral Prayer to Close

Dismiss                 (band plays/sings “we are hungry” while people leave)

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