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Iowa City Church Podcast

Welcome to the Iowa City Church sermon and teaching page.  We know that life can be confusing, and sometime just plain hard.  We believe the best way to live life comes through following Jesus.  These lessons and sermons are designed to be a resource to help you on that journey.  We hope you find them helpful!

Sep 11, 2023

No one likes to struggle, and suffering---we could all do without. Or could we? Most often it is the struggle of life that tests the rootedness of our faith. Pastor and author Charles Haddon Spurgeon writes:
"We cannot be established except by suffering. It is of no use our hoping that we shall be well-rooted if no March winds have passed over us. The young oak cannot be expected to strike its roots so deep as the old one. Those old gnarlings on the roots, and those strange twistings of the branches, all tell of many storms that have swept over the aged tree. But they are also indicators of the depths into which the roots have dived."

The depth of the roots are indicators of the storms of life. How do you handle the storms of life? When storms hit, do the roots of your faith go deeper into Christ or do you feel yourself slowly being pulled away? Jesus, in his parable about the soils, talks about how the seed of gospel lands in some soil and begins to quickly germinate but then this happens:

"But when the sun came up, the plants were scorched, and they withered because they had not root." ~ Matthew 13:6

Pressure, opposition, struggle, and suffering are all realities of following Jesus. For some, these pressures uproot their lives and everything about their faith falls apart. Yet for others the roots of their faith go even deeper and they literally grow stronger through the circumstances. How can we, the face of "March winds" and not only remain rooted, but grow stronger as well?

This is one of the focuses of  New Testament book of Colossians. The apostle Paul is writing to Christian who are feeling the pressure to uproot their lives from Christ and find another option; like returning to Judaism or choosing one of the pagan cultural gods. This is why he writes these urgent words:

"So then, just as you received Christ Jesus as Lord, continue to live your lives in him, rooted and built up in him, strengthened in the faith as you were taught, and overflowing with thankfulness." ~ Colossians 2:6-7

On Sunday we will study all of what Paul writes in chapter two and discover the strategy he teaches to help all of us remain rooted in King Jesus. To be a part of the conversation, give a listen to part three of Rooted.