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A few months ago, I asked God for a word for this upcoming year. My 2017 marked a year of transition—moving across the country, new jobs, new home, new relationship, and more. I’ll be honest, I felt pretty confident walking into my recent season of transition. My heart was full and hungry for more. I felt prepared and ready for game day. What I didn’t realize, was how much change was in store. It wasn’t just a move. It was a new home, new people, and ultimately, a new community. Every person and place that I left behind, was uprooted. I learned quickly that my roots were more established in the places, situations, and relationships, more than the word and truth of God. Crazy humbling.

It really hit me coming into this year. Transition causes the wind to stir you. It challenges you in ways that you may not be prepared for. There were a few times I was rocked, because I didn’t remember the truth of God’s word and promises. So, I asked God to search my heart, and He put the word “ROOTED” on my heart (and all over my journal).

Establish deep roots in the Word of God, to prepare for what is ahead.

For those who are wondering what it means for God to put a “word” on your heart, I see it as a theme that arises from prayers, journaling, worship and conversations, with people who are praying on your behalf. Anytime God repeats himself, you listen. You pay attention.

So, I’m ready to declare this word for 2018. But before I do that, I wanted to share a bit more about what it means—with the hope that you, too, may be encouraged to join me on the journey of rootedness.

Rooted means to establish firmly and deeply. Doesn’t that give you chills? I felt my heart pulsing as I read those words above, and then I had another thought.

What do you think of when you hear rooted? Anyone think of trees? Okay, I hope I’m not the only one! Right now, I can picture large oak trees arching over a driveway, or pine trees standing firm on the side of a beautiful mountain. What’s so beautiful, is that these trees stand firm and upright. And you know why they stand upright? Because they are rooted.

Trees are the most valuable, enduring plants here on earth. I mean, there is no other organism here on earth that lives longer than trees. Most require large amounts of water per day, and take time to grow.

Let’s dive a litter deeper for a minute. Roots breathe moisture and nutrients into the tree for a lifetime, and that means the roots are spread horizontally, fueled by the main taproot. All of the roots together, bring life, growth and wisdom to the tree.


Are we letting God tap into our roots?

He wants to grow our knowledge, love and faith for him. We have to let him tap and be the only fuel for our life. If we allow the spirit and Word to be our source,

His almighty water will grow deep within us.

God is our rootedness. He will hold us upright.

He promises this to us, but we have to first allow His Word to be our roots. (Ephesians 2:11-22)


Do you want to grow? Do you want to flourish?


I sure do! This year, I am expectant and ready to be rooted firmly in His Word. I want to grow. I want to flourish. I want to stand firmly rooted, so that nothing can make be fall, because His spirit inside me is firmly holding me up.

Let’s be firmly planted in the House of the Lord. Let’s flourish in the courts of our God. (Psalm 92:13)


How do we start?


Roots need to be fueled with massive amounts of water, every day and over time. The deeper the roots, the taller the tree grows, and that means our time in the word must grow.


God’s word is a source of eternal encouragement.


Paul encourages us to stand firm and hold fast to the teachings, so that He may give us eternal encouragement. (2 Thessalonians 2:15-16)

This means that God’s word gives us eternal encouragement. It is the only nutrient we need.

Our roots will grow in Him vertically, and in His church horizontally.

Roots spread horizontally as well, to gain other nutrients and supplements. This looks like our earthly relationships and the church. As we stand firm in Him, our roots naturally spread across the ground.

Let’s spread our roots, and supplement our life with people and a church that is also rooted upright in Him. Continue to encourage one another in truth. (Heb 3:13)

So, who’s ready to be rooted? I’d love for you to join me. I don’t want to do it alone. One of the greatest desires of my heart in 2018, is to be rooted.

My prayer for you today, is that God’s Word will fill your hearts and needs as eternal encouragement. May we start building roots today, to prepare for the seasons ahead. May we stand firm, encourage and build up each other in truth.

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Courtney Leatherwood

Author Courtney Leatherwood

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Join the discussion 4 Comments

  • Thirza Dezan says:

    WOO HOO! i’m here with you! i started in november, delving into the word. today a couple of verses stuck out:
    Psalm 119:9 Wherewithal shall a young man cleanse his way? by taking heed thereto according to thy word.
    Psalm 119:114 Thou art my hiding place and my shield: I hope in thy word.

    you get so much in return just from reading it. i am so thankful to live in a country where i can freely read/practice His word, and share it also!
    Thirza D.

  • Jesse Eggemeyer says:

    AMEN? I enjoyed this, thank you very much for sharing. The ? comparison is awesome btw! we all need to recognize the Beauty all around us to truly appreciate the creation ✌ God Bless

  • Traci Payne says:

    This is exactly what I needed for the new year. Thank you. Thank you. I’m with you on this one.

  • Julie McGlinchey says:


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