• What are some opportunities that have presented themselves to you over the
last 12 months?
• Do you ever feel like you are spread too thin to seize new opportunities?
When you see a tree that is 60 feet tall, like many of the pines around our church
campus, there is a root system that is roughly the same dimension as the
branches. A 60 foot tree has 60 feet of roots beneath the ground.
Those branches can withstand straight-line winds because of the tangle of roots
holding the tree in place from beneath the surface. If a tree has branches that
have spread rapidly and formed a stunted root system, the storm will leave the
litter of capsized trees. The Creator has blessed us with endless opportunities on
this earth and He has created within us a desire for a root system that matches
the width of our opportunities.
Moses got a crash course on overextension when his leadership gifts were
activated without the character to sustain them. Yet God redeemed Moses using
years of hard service in the Midian Desert to deepen the root system of this man’s
Exodus 34:29—35 describes the root building after concentrated time with God in
29 When Moses came down Mount Sinai carrying the two stone tablets inscribed
with the terms of the covenant,he wasn’t aware that his face had become radiant
because he had spoken to the Lord. 30 So when Aaron and the people of Israel
saw the radiance of Moses’ face, they were afraid to come near him.
31 But Moses called out to them and asked Aaron and all the leaders of the
community to come over, and he talked with them. 32 Then all the people of
Israel approached him, and Moses gave them all the instructions the Lord had
given him on Mount Sinai. 33 When Moses finished speaking with them, he
covered his face with a veil. 34 But whenever he went into the Tent of Meeting to
speak with the Lord, he would remove the veil until he came out again. Then he
would give the people whatever instructions the Lord had given him, 35 and the
people of Israel would see the radiant glow of his face. So he would put the veil
over his face until he returned to speak with the Lord.
Concentrated time with God had changed Moses by giving him depth of character.
• Do you recall a difficult season in your life that God used to deepen your
spiritual root system?
PETER and JOHN
The author Luke records in Acts 4:13(NLT) an important insight into the source of
strength for Peter and John. “The members of the council were amazed when
they saw the boldness of Peter and John, for they could see that they were
ordinary men with no special training in the Scriptures. They also recognized them
as men who had been with Jesus”
Concentrated amounts of time in the presence of God change us. Ancient spiritual
practices (prayer, study, hospitality, service, worship, renewal, etc) transform our
character and anchor us in the heavenly reality that shines out of us with spiritual
authority. The spiritual afterglow is not for ego or entertainment; instead, it opens
a channel for God to do what God wants to do. God’s redemptive agenda is
facilitated by men and women who have been with Jesus and who carry his
• What ancient spiritual practices are transforming your character now?
Before we go wider, we need to be sure we are also going deeper. Before we take
on more responsibilities, we need access the root system supporting our current
Jesus described a house built on solid rock: its foundations ran so deep and
strong that gale force winds could not dislodge it (Matthew 7:24-25). Stormproof
leadership is deep-rooted, not overextended. Concentrated amounts of time in the
presence of God change us by developing our root system.
Develop the root system and your branches will be able to endure the inevitable