I woke up this morning with this topic so heavily on my mind (after my reading and praying time). When people repeatedly do something that is bad for them, sometimes it’s done out of ignorance, and other times it’s because of their deep “root system” or set of beliefs.
When we are children, there is a period in our young lives known as the “formative years” where we mentally process things in such a way that they become engrained into our consciousness and into our personality. It is at this time that “roots” i.e., beliefs are formed.
Think of a yellow rose. The seed is first planted into the ground. Then roots are formed in the ground and a shoot later pops up out of the ground. (Okay, clearly I am no gardener, but work with me here….) It gets a little water, a little fertilizer, a little sunlight, and more water. Now we have a rosebud. Eventually, it becomes a yellow rose in bloom. (Keep in mind that a weed grows in a similar way.)
Now, fast forward to adulthood. Nowadays, you probably see a whole bunch of craziness! It’s because of the “roots.” For instance, if a man grew up in a household where during his formative years he saw his daddy enjoy sneaking out and cheating on his mama, since he is learning to be a man from his daddy, it’s no surprise that cheating on his own wife may happen because of his “root system.” He may get caught, see his wife’s hurt and despair, and he may promise to never do it again, but that’s just pulling a leaf off the weed. He WILL cheat again if it’s part of his root system. Unless that cheating “weed” is snatched out by the root, cheating WILL happen again. (Have you ever tried to kill a weed without killing the root?)
Likewise, if promiscuity becomes a part of a child’s “root system” due to abuse or experimentation, s/he may not even be able to wrap her/his mind around the benefits of abstinence as an adult because that’s not what s/he knows and the roots of promiscuity (now as an adult) would be deep.
So, as I was thinking about roots, I thought of all the people who do not show affection and I thought of people who show anger as their primary emotion. I thought of people who have fear of rejection and fear of abandonment. I thought of all the confusion and bitterness in the world. I thought of all of the defensiveness, cattiness, and backbiting. These are some awful root systems! There’s a whole lot of pain! And most people only think to “prune the branches” or “pull a leaf off of the weed.” No! If we do not snatch out these undesirable root systems, or kill the weed altogether, all of this negativity will come right back.
I have found as far as healing goes, you must “get to the root” of the problem and deal with it there. Go to the place where the belief was formed. If the problem is cheating, fear of rejection, fear of abandonment or unworthiness, or whatever, it must be addressed at the root, at the beginning. It must be healed where it happened. But the problem is that many people don’t want to face and address pain and turmoil, so they end up living it out everyday.
As a Christian, my Father has helped me uproot a lot of weeds. I’ve found that only a Higher Power can do this. Many times, when people are ready to let go, when they are truly ready to surrender all the negativity, a Higher Power is involved. They realize they can’t snatch out those roots and kill those weeds by themselves and it’s too big and too much for friends and family to do either.
To parents: “Train up a child in the way he should go, and when he is old he will not depart from it.”–Proverbs 22:6 I’m not a perfect mother. I’ve missed the mark lots of times. I am still conscious of this everyday and everyday I do my best to impart the will of my Father to my children. Also, “Fathers, do not irritate and provoke your children to anger [do not exasperate them to resentment], but rear them [tenderly] in the training and discipline and the counsel and admonition of the Lord.” –Ephesians 6:4 How we train up our children affects the roots they form. It’s our responsibility to give them the very best root systems possible.
To other adults: get by yourself and think about some of your bad habits, bad behaviors, stuff you’d like to change. I KNOW most of it will be downright difficult, especially if you’re older. But isn’t it time for you to let God snatch those bad roots out? He’s the Best Gardener! Don’t you want to get rid of those weeds? You may need a complete renewing of your mind. Get help from someone you know, love, and trust. He or she can direct you to a reputable minister or counselor, preferably someone who is skilled in dealing with “bitter roots.” You can get involved with a prayer group. I encourage you to design your own healing support network so that you can finally enjoy your life “more abundantly.”
In the meantime, meditate on these scriptures below. (I used the Amplified version of the Bible except for the last one.) I hope this helps to increase your self-awareness and expand your thinking.
Phillipians 4:4, 6-9, 11-13
1 Corinthians 6:19-20
Psalm 139:14 (KJV)
This is my prayer for you,
In Jesus’ name…Amen.