A short phrase has been in my memory from the seventies ‘Take root downward and bear fruit upward’. It comes from a prophecy by the prophet Isaiah to King Hezekiah: ‘And the remnant that is escaped of the house of Judah shall yet again take root downward, and bear fruit upward’ (2 Kings 19:30).
The words ‘Take root downward and bear fruit upward’ speak to me about the things of God dropping deeply into our spirits like a seed. The Holy Spirit feeds that seed and causes it to germinate and bear fruit that is pleasing to Him.
In my childhood, Sunday school teachers would give a verse of Scripture to learn each week. In those days we only used the King James Version of the Bible, and today most of my recollection of Scripture is in that form. However, I find that with today’s variety of versions of the Bible, and by comparing different translations, verses do come with clearer understanding.
But it’s amazing how God may bring to mind a verse, which has been in the memory many years, and use it in a particular situation in an appropriate way. My wife and I were talking with someone the other day and an obscure verse came to my mind. She questioned if it really was a verse of Scripture. On finding the reference she asked, “How did you know that verse?” It was one of the verses I’d learned in Sunday school.
We read about the power of the Word of God in the letter to the Hebrews; ‘For the Word of God is living and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart’ (Hebrews. 4:12).
So, when we let the ‘seeds’ of God’s Word sink deeply into our mind and memory, there’s no knowing how and where it might bear fruit, or what that fruit might be. But when the Holy Spirit activates a ‘seed’, the fruit it bears may speak significantly to someone’s situation, and thereby bring glory and honour to God.
We used to sing a chorus which went something like this; ‘Hide God’s Word in your heart, Hide God’s Word in your heart. The Word of love sent from above. Hide God’s Word in your heart’.
There’s an amazing power in God’s Word to bless us and others when His Spirit brings it to mind in particular situations. So let His Word take root downward and bear fruit upward, and look for God to use it in ways that cause you to rejoice and praise Him.
Prayer: O Lord God, thank You for Your Word. Help me to take it deep into my spirit and memorise it, so that You’re able to remind me in those moments when You want to use it to speak to someone. Then cause it to bear fruit for Your glory I pray, in Jesus’ name. Amen.
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