It all began with a seed. God planted the seed of His Kingdom in our hearts. Those seeds sprouted and took root. The life that sprang up within us inspired us to love God with all that we are. We sought to become even more deeply rooted because we found the nourishment that we needed in God’s fertile field. The Word grew within us and gave us more life. Our love for God is now ever-increasing, always growing deeper and wider and making our foundation stronger. We draw near to God in worship, together with all the saints. We have taken root. And we return faithfully and consistently to the fellowship to worship together –this is an expression of love for God. Our faithfulness and consistency is a reflection of how much we love God. If you love to be at the Sunday morning service and prioritize your life to reflect that, then you have truly taken root and have committed yourself to your God.
As we began to grow and reach towards heaven, we learned to branch out –we sought different opportunities to spend time with other Christians and mature in the love of the saints. We learn from one another and find the fellowship of the Spirit and the intimate connection of family as we mature together in a group setting. This group within the church might be a Sunday school class, a Bible study group, a ministry team, a special interest group, or a small group. Whatever the group may be, we mature together in prayer, study and purpose. Our influence and the ways we are influenced by others begin to branch out. And once the branches begin to mature, they are ready to produce fruit.
The branches begin to thrive. I find it interesting that the section of a tree that is covered with leaves and produces fruit is called a crown. Everything that the Church of Jesus Christ does should directly or indirectly be related to the making of disciples. We thrive when our “branching groups” begin to produce fruit. A tree that produces fruit blesses others. Isn’t God awesome? Because within every piece of fruit there are more seeds. We learn to simply serve because our Savior is worthy of service. We learn to serve Him selflessly, not expecting praise of men but coveting praise from the Father for work well done. We find the food that this world knows nothing about. Our appetite is truly satisfied and our passion for God grows stronger when we thrive for Him. We want to serve others because this is how we serve Him –and find joy. We serve, and in the process, we plant seeds. We serve the community, the outside world around us first, and earn the right to share our Savior with them. By serving, we produce seeds and God is glorified –and our crown is visible to all. And as God gives opportunity for us to offer more cups of cold water and more hands commit themselves to service, we plant new seeds. New lives take root and joyfully join us on the journey.
These are the four simple words that I would like you to remember: Seed, root, branch and thrive. This is the process of discipleship that we follow individually, as an entire church, as fellowship groups and in service. Let us all grow in maturity as we grow from worshipping together to connecting to a group and finally serving others together as a group. Love God, love others and serve the world. Root, branch and thrive. Let your roots dig deep –come to worship and love God. Let your branches reach higher –love others by finding a group that you can call “family.” And let your crown be visible and glorious to the world as you thrive by serving the world and then we will produce a rich harvest for the Kingdom by the power and nourishment of the Spring. It is the goal of KCC to “prepare God's people for works of service so that the body of Christ may be built up until we all reach unity in the faith and in the knowledge of the Son of God and become mature, attaining to the whole measure of the fullness of Christ,” (Ephesians 4:12-13). May KCC be “like a tree planted by streams of water, which yields its fruit in season and whose leaf does not wither,” (Psalm 1:3). Then whatever we do will prosper. And prosper we must because He loved us first when we were still sinners. Love God, love others and serve the world: Root, branch and thrive.
Love in Jesus,