Listen to this devotional
A devotional is an in-depth Bible study. A typical devotional should take you anywhere from 5 to 15 minutes to complete. Download and print a PDF version of this devotional for yourself, or use it with a friend to create an engaging discussion.
Explore me, O God, and know the real me. Dig deeply and discover who I am. Put me to the test and watch how I handle the strain.  Examine me to see if there is an evil bone in me, and guide me down Your path forever.Psalm 139:23-24 Voice
Strain exposes who we really are. How have you been handling the strain in your life? What comes out? How deeply rooted are you and able to handle the strain of life?
In order to dig deep, we have to be willing to go through the process of discovering who we really are and what’s really in our hearts. We often like to stay superficial and avoid this process.
- How do you feel about God and other people knowing “the real you”?
Dig deep to last long
But since they don’t have deep roots, they don’t last long. They fall away as soon as they have problems or are persecuted for believing God’s word.Mark 4:17 NLT
If we don’t have deep roots, we will fall away from God as soon as we have problems- we won’t last long!
You can fall away from God in your heart before you outwardly fall away. If we want to stay faithful to God and strong throughout our lives, we need to learn to dig deep and have lasting roots.
Dig deep to stand strong
It is like a person building a house who digs deep and lays the foundation on solid rock. When the floodwaters rise and break against that house, it stands firm because it is well built.Luke 6:48 NLT
Storms hit all of us in life. It’s important to differentiate between storms and normal life stages. Changes to our life stage – like having kids, graduating from college and getting a new job, dating and breaking up – are a normal part of life … they aren’t necessarily “storms.”
We need to differentiate between storms and life-stages so that we don’t get bitter at God during a normal stage of life.
But the one who always listens to me will live undisturbed in a heavenly peace. Free from fear, confident and courageous, you will rest unafraid and sheltered from the storms of life.Proverbs 1:33 TPT
Storms of life come! It is our relationship with God that helps us remain steady. Shelters keep you protected from storms. A strong relationship with God shelters us from the storms of life.
When you go through a storm, do you fight harder to be close to God? Or do you drift farther from God?
Storms are times we need God most, yet we often let ourselves get farther from him when we go through difficulty. Drifting from God while you are going through a storm is dangerous; you can lose your faith if you don’t fight to stay close to him.
How can we have more depth?
“What sorrow awaits you teachers of religious law and you Pharisees. Hypocrites! For you are so careful to clean the outside of the cup and the dish, but inside you are filthy-full of greed and self-indulgence!Matthew 23:25 NLT
Religious people focus on themselves and appearances instead of digging deep. How worried are you about the “outside”? Your appearance, social status, image, or possessions?
Emotional self-indulgence is a “self” sin that hurts our depth. Building our lives on what we feel is a way we build on sand. Do you allow emotion to control and lead you? Do you overreact to circumstances?
How enriched are they who find their strength in the Lord; within their hearts are the highways of holiness! Even when their paths wind through the dark valley of tears, they dig deep to find a pleasant pool where others find only pain. He gives to them a brook of blessing filled from the rain of an outpouring.Psalm 84:5-6 TPT
When we dig deep, we can find pleasantness where others find only pain. Digging deep into our hearts and digging deep with God allows us to handle even the worst kinds of pain in life without losing our faith.
We will be enriched and our lives will be full when we find strength in the Lord! Digging deep with God brings blessings. God can give us blessings of peace, love, contentment, forgiveness, and freedom.
The seed that fell among the thorns represents others who hear God’s word but all too quickly the message is crowded out by the worries of this life, the lure of wealth, and the desire for other things, so no fruit is produced.Mark 4:18
Has God’s Word been crowded out in your life? By worries, wealth, and desires?
Deep roots produce lasting fruit
And the seed that fell on good soil represents those who hear and accept God’s word and produce a harvest of thirty, sixty, or even a hundred times as much as had been planted!Mark 4:20
Deep-rooted good hearts hear and accept God’s Word and produce fruit.
For our gospel came to you not merely in the form of words but in mighty power infused with the Holy Spirit and deep conviction. Surely you remember how we lived our lives transparently before you to encourage you.1 Thessalonians 1:5 TPT
Spiritual depth is important not just for ourselves, but also for helping other people. We learn from 1 Thessalonians that the gospel should be preached to others with power infused by the Holy Spirit, and with deep conviction from those who are sharing it.
This verse also says our lives should be transparent in order to help others. Transparency is crucial to having “deep convictions.” If you won’t let God’s Word sink deeply into your own fears, insecurities, and sins, you’ll have a tough time inspiring someone else do it.
- Is your life transparent?
- How deep are your convictions about truth, sin, relationship with God, purpose, and discipleship? What do you pass on to others?
For the arrows of your conviction have pierced me deeply…Psalm 38:2 TPT
Does God’s Word still pierce your heart? It’s a good thing when we read or hear Scriptures and feel something about them. Don’t avoid that feeling! That is how you build depth with God.
What delight comes to those who follow God’s ways! They won’t walk in step with the wicked…  They will be standing firm like a flourishing tree planted by God’s design, deeply rooted by the brooks of bliss, bearing fruit in every season of their lives. They are never dry, never fainting, ever blessed, ever prosperous…Psalm 1:1,3 TPT
A person who is deeply rooted in God never gives up and is never dry, never faint and never quits.
Build deep roots by becoming a learner
Trust in the Lord completely, and do not rely on your own opinions. With all your heart rely on him to guide you, and he will lead you in every decision you make.  Become intimate with him in whatever you do, and he will lead you wherever you go. Don’t think for a moment that you know it all,  for wisdom comes when you adore him with undivided devotion and avoid everything that’s wrong.  Then you will find the healing refreshment your body and spirit long for.Proverbs 3:5-8 TPT
An important part of building deep roots in your relationship with God is deciding to trust him completely instead of yourself or your own opinions. God promises to lead and guide us in every decision we make. If you let him, he’ll teach you to be wise, make right decisions, and find refreshment and healing.
But beware of pride – thinking you “know it all” and relying on your own opinions will stop you from hearing what God wants to teach you.
- How much do you seek advice from the Bible and spiritual mentors about your relationship with God, your marriage, your parenting, or other areas of your life?
- How teachable are you?
- Are you a good learner?
…because they hated knowledge and did not choose the fear of the LORD. They refused my advice. They despised my every warning.Proverbs 1:29-31,33 GW
31] They will eat the fruit of their lifestyle. They will be stuffed with their own schemes.  But whoever listens to me will live without worry and will be free from the dread of disaster.
We can choose to listen to God and fear God. When we do, we can be free from the dread of disaster. Dread is to “anticipate with great apprehension or fear.” Synonyms of dread are: fear, apprehension, trepidation, anxiety, worry, concern, foreboding, disquiet, unease, and angst
Imagine if your life were free from these things! It can be when you choose to listen to and learn from God.
Deep roots lead to strong faith
[20-21] He never stopped believing God’s promise, for he was made strong in his faith to father a child. And because he was mighty in faith and convinced that God had all the power needed to fulfill his promises, Abraham glorified God!Romans 4:20-21 TPT
Abraham had deep roots; he never stopped believing God’s promise even when he had every reason to doubt. His faith in God couldn’t be shaken by the storms around him. Let’s follow his example by building deep roots and becoming “mighty in faith”!