Putting Out Roots

The new housing development looked bleak with no grass or trees in sight. Barren red dirt of rich red clay hugged the new homes as if daring anything to put down roots.

The “For Sale” sign went up just long enough to be taken down again. The first thing the proud new owners did put in grass. Long rows of sod were placed in intervals across the lawn. They were not touching but close and many wondered how that would work. Visions of zebra striped yards rose in the minds of observers.

The grass, the water, and the sun all worked in harmony and a very short time a strange thing occurred. A strange, even peculiar, process was observed as the grass settled into the yard. As the grass was growing down and putting in deep roots it was always growing sideways and was reaching out to merge with its neighbors on either side. Soon the whole yard was covered in one knitted whole. The separate strips and barren ground were things of the past.

It is a gentle reminder that as members of the Body of Christ we are, despite things that might temporarily separate us, destined to be united in one whole. As we dig deep to root ourselves in God, remember today to reach out to that brother or sister made in the image of God.


When the great racehorse, Secretariat, rare winner of the U.S. Triple Crown, died something interesting was discovered.  He had set a record in two races which still, nearly forty years later, has not been duplicated.  They often say the race is to the swiftest, the one with the stamina, but really is to the one with the heart to run.  In this great horse was a very large heart.  His winning was in his genes, his family tree, as much as the unique animal he was.  Research into his bloodline found winners going back for centuries, all with extra large hearts and a history of winning.

Winners have Heart
What a message to the humans about the nature of success, achievement, and accomplishment.  The winner is the one with the largest heart!

Although, for people it is only symbolic to talk about people of generosity, love, and victory as having a 'good heart' or a 'magnanimous heart' or a 'pure heart'.  The example of the horse Secretariat shows there is more truth than fiction in the analogy and maybe a lesson for us as well.

So we should get working to exercise that heart, grow it big with courage, stamina, vision, and love for others.  Most importantly, we should pass that along in our relational gene pool and positively impact all those we know and meet.   

The heart of the champion is big.  How big is your heart?


Mending the Broken

Th ex-ray was clear; the fracture would always be there.  The surprise was that when broken bones mend the two parts do not magically blend back together in an invisible fuse as if nothing had ever happened.  No, as the doctor pointed out to me, new growth wraps itself around the break to encompass it and make it stronger. The ankle bone that was there prior to the break will not be the bone there after the mending is done.

It was later that the elegance of this small fact revealed to me a truth with applications across the spectrum of bones to human relations and organizational management.

The 'break' in a relationship cannot be mended as if it never occurred, however, something new can emerge that takes that break, recognizes it and then wraps its arms around it to grow something new and stronger.

It does not happen overnight, it may be awkward, clumsy, and occasionally painful, but it will happen.  It does not happen instantaneously but in small stages, bit by bit, over the time needed for the process to finish.  It is not a pretty thing; just as dead skin is trapped beneath that cast during the healing time, the residue of an old life may linger on, may be resistant to healing oils, and may take awhile to recover to a healthy state. 

It will happen though, with attention, care, and caution the broken will once more appear normal.  All of life is lived by many small steps - sometimes they are nimble movements and sometimes they are encumbered by the heavy process of healing and recovery.  In that slow, intentional process when we drag a cast around it seen the truth that we need to slow down, examine things, more carefully live our life and choose our actions with more wisdom, grace, and forgiveness.

The fracture may always be there but it is our choice, ultimately, whether it is made stronger or compromised. Do we allow the fracture to remain a raw wound or do we allow the healing process to build something new and stronger from the brokenness?