Placing Your Roots in the Right Atmosphere

Everyone lives within a certain atmosphere. Now, when I say this, I mean it within a metaphorical context. Other people call it “environment,” some call it “social conditions,” but for the sake of this post, I’ll refer to it as one’s “atmosphere.” And at the end of the day, it is the atmosphere you decide to grow within, that determines the way you think as well as act. So continue reading to learn about placing your roots in the right atmosphere.

Tree?

I think I’ve mentioned it before, but, God has a keen habit out of likening humans to trees, vine branches, etc… in the Bible. So, as you read this post, you will notice my comparison of us, humans, to trees.

Nevertheless, onward we shall venture into this study!

Every tree requires a good atmosphere. If a tree doesn’t have the right soil, the right quality of air, the right amount of water, it fails to sustain itself.

But, what atmosphere do you put yourself in?

I can tell you right now, you are not superhuman to be free of what surrounds you. As a human being, it is impossible to have no attachment to what you consume.

If you spend your time listening to songs with aggressive lyrics and cuss words, it won’t be too difficult to find yourself swearing in your mind every now and then.

1 Corinthians 15:33 King James Version (KJV)
33 Be not deceived: evil communications corrupt good manners.

Furthermore, as the Bible says above, “Be not deceived,” because it is quite easy for well-meaning people to fool themselves into thinking that they are strong enough to be unaffected by what they spend time with.

Like it or not, the analogy of human beings to trees is a very real image. We are just as easily affected by our social atmosphere as trees are affected by their physical atmosphere.

You take away a tree’s sunlight, it withers. And in the same way, if you expose your mind to the world’s filth, you will be affected.

For example, if you watch an anime, movie, or TV show that embraces vulgarity, your mindset will automatically become more and more tolerant towards that which is vulgar. Therefore, start placing your roots in the right atmosphere.

Placing Your Roots in the Right Atmosphere

As I said in the prior subsection, please, begin placing your roots in the right atmosphere. Don’t let this world fool you into following its flow lest it leads you to loss.

Now, behind that computer or phone screen, you may be asking, “But Andre, where should I root myself upon?”

My friend, root yourself in the love of Lord Jesus Christ. Lord Jesus Christ is the one true God who came down to Earth in the flesh of a human being. His ministry healed, delivered, and blessed everyone. But, the religious leaders of that day wished for nothing but harm towards Lord Jesus Christ.

So they forced the ancient Roman government to crucify Lord Jesus Christ. However, this was the plan of God for He had to die as an innocent man to pay for the sin of humanity. The precious blood of Lord Jesus Christ paid for every sin, curse, and suffering.

And as you accept Jesus Christ as your Lord and Saviour, you are placing your roots in the right atmosphere, you root yourself in His love!

John 3:16 World English Bible (WEB)
16 For God so loved the world, that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish, but have eternal life.

His blood is the water which you need and His heart is the soil from which you must sprout. He died on the cross a horrific death to grant your soul eternal life and He experienced a glorious resurrection within 3 days to grant you victory over every trial and challenge.

Ephesians 3:17-19 World English Bible (WEB)
17 that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith, to the end that you, being rooted and grounded in love18 may be strengthened to comprehend with all the saints what is the width and length and height and depth, 19 and to know Christ’s love which surpasses knowledge, that you may be filled with all the fullness of God.

The Grand Gardener

John 10:10 World English Bible (WEB)
10 The thief only comes to steal, kill, and destroy. I came that they may have life, and may have it abundantly.

The God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, the God who came down to Earth in the flesh of a human being as Lord Jesus Christ has set before you two crossroads.

Choose the path that He wills for your life. Make sure you start placing your roots in the right atmosphere because with God, you will blossom and bear good fruit.

Spend some time studying the Word of God. Pray to the Lord your God, and place all your anxieties on Him. He will most certainly bless you!

Galatians 5:16 World English Bible (WEB)
16 But I say, walk by the Spirit, and you won’t fulfill the lust of the flesh.

Let God be your gardener. He will water you, He will place you in fertile soil, and He will prune you so that you bear the best fruit possible. Under the care of God who loves you very much, you will grow and learn to love Him.

The sacred and precious heart of God beats with love for you. His words of care and concern for your well being are sincere and well-justified by the sacrifices He’s made for you.

You may not feel love for God, however, He only asks you to seek Him so that when you get to know Him more, you’ll fall in love with Him.

After all, what’s not there in God to fall in love with. He made you, He’s kind, He’s courageous, He’s valiant, He’s loving, and He’s so much more.

In conclusion, just spend time every day reflecting on His love and maintain a good relationship with your Heavenly Father.

Jeremiah 31:3 World English Bible (WEB)
Yahweh appeared of old to me, saying,

“Yes, I have loved you with an everlasting love.
    Therefore I have drawn you with loving kindness.

Treating All With The Same Heart

If there’s anything by which we measure others by, it’s the measure of character. Those with great character naturally attract people around them. And people are especially mesmerized by those who treat others with fairness, kindness, and compassion. Treating all with the same heart isn’t necessarily easy. That is why I’ll be talking about fairness, kindness, and compassion, as well as how they pertain to one’s character and one’s heart.

Treating All With Fairness

First of all, it is vital to treat everyone you know with fairness. Treating all with fairness means that you see people, not through the lens of their varying differences; rather, you see them through the fact that they’re made in God’s image.

Why does God want us to treat others with fairness? It’s because we don’t have the right to treat others in any other way. And that’s because, without Christ, we’re all failures. We’ve all made mistakes, we’ve all lied, and we’ve all done things contrary to the pure nature of God.

I don’t even need to prove the above point because even you know you’re not perfect. To think anything different would be foolish or dishonest.

Ephesians 2:12 World English Bible (WEB)
12 that you were at that time separate from Christ, alienated from the commonwealth of Israel, and strangers from the covenants of the promise, having no hope and without God in the world.

And our imperfectness does not allow us to enter the Heaven of a perfect God, so what God did was that He came to Earth as a human, Lord Jesus Christ. He did miracles, healed the sick, and preached about the kingdom of God.

But, religious hypocritical people hated Him for His integrity and authority, so they led the ancient Roman Government to crucify Him two millennia ago.

However, Lord Jesus Christ allowed the pain to come upon Him for a reason. That reason was to atone as a sacrifice in our place. This means that whosoever accepts Jesus Christ as Lord and Saviour will be saved.

That is why whether rich or poor, sick or healthy, smart or silly, Lord Jesus wants us to treat each other the same. He died for all, and He rose again after 3 days to live for all.

James 2:8-9 World English Bible (WEB)
However, if you fulfill the royal law according to the Scripture, “You shall love your neighbor as yourself,”Leviticus 19:18 you do well. But if you show partiality, you commit sin, being convicted by the law as transgressors.

Treat All With Kindness

Next up is kindness. Kindness is beautiful. There’s no better way to describe it. We, as people, are naturally attracted to those who show kindness. The reason for that is because God is kind, and, although we may not be kind, ourselves, we still like its nature as God created us in His image.

To be kind, according to the Bible, means to go out of your way to honour another individual.

A prime example of a kind man is Boaz.

Ruth 2:8-10 World English Bible (WEB)
Then Boaz said to Ruth, “Listen, my daughter. Don’t go to glean in another field, and don’t go from here, but stay here close to my maidensLet your eyes be on the field that they reap, and go after them. Haven’t I commanded the young men not to touch you? When you are thirsty, go to the vessels, and drink from that which the young men have drawn.”
10 Then she fell on her face and bowed herself to the ground, and said to him, “Why have I found favor in your sight, that you should take knowledge of me, since I am a foreigner?”

Boaz heard of Ruth, a widow distantly related to him, and he let her work in his fields. But, he was a kind man loved by all his workers. When Ruth started working for Boaz, Boaz ensured that she had access to water, his other workers would not bother her, and that she worked in an area which was best suited for her.

Boaz went out of his way to ensure that Ruth was well-taken care of. Later on, the Biblical story progresses to the point of Ruth and Boaz marrying and eventually becoming the great grandparents of the renowned King David.

Ephesians 4:32 King James Version (KJV)
32 And be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ’s sake hath forgiven you.

Likewise, be kind to others. Go out of your way to make sure that everyone is treated properly. Treat your parents with kindness, treat your siblings with kindness, and treat your spouse with kindness. Kindness must be shown to those you know before it is appealing to those you don’t know.

This kindness within Boaz was apparent not only to Ruth but also to his long-time employees hence why they loved him.

Ruth 2:4 World English Bible (WEB)
Behold, Boaz came from Bethlehem, and said to the reapers, “May Yahweh be with you.” They answered him, “May Yahweh bless you.”

Treating All With Compassion

Finally, make sure that you’re treating all with compassion.

Ephesians 4:32 King James Version (KJV)
32 And be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ’s sake hath forgiven you.

The word translated as “tenderhearted” above also translates as “compassionate” in other translations. But, the actual word for it is “eusplagchnos” which is a combination of the Greek words, “eu” and “splagchnos.”

“Eu” is a Greek word God uses in the Bible to describe a servant pleasing his master. The word in the below passage underlined and bolded is the English word for “eu.”

Matthew 25:20-21 King James Version (KJV)
20 And so he that had received five talents came and brought other five talents, saying, Lord, thou deliveredst unto me five talents: behold, I have gained beside them five talents more.
21 His lord said unto him, Well done, thou good and faithful servant: thou hast been faithful over a few things, I will make thee ruler over many things: enter thou into the joy of thy lord.

The next part of the word, “splagchnos,” literally translates as “inward parts” or “guts or bowels.” Now, this word may be referring to emotions that comes from the deepest level of one’s emotions.

To give you an idea of what this word means in context, here is an example of a verse where I underlined and bolded the word for “splagchnos.”

Philemon 12 World English Bible (WEB)
12 I am sending him back. Therefore receive him, that is, my own heart,

So, when you put together the words “eu” and “splagchnos,” you get”eusplagchnos,” which translates as compassionate or tenderhearted.

Why am I saying this? It’s because compassion comes from a deep part within you and it desires something good for the subject of the emotion.

God’s compassion for us is genuine and gut-deep so that He desires good for us and will do something to make His desired good happen within our lives.

Therefore, show this same compassion to others and reflect the love of God. And treating all with fairness, kindness, and compassion is an expectation from Lord Jesus Christ. If you lack any of these, remember God’s love for you.

Remember His fairness to you where He is a fair judge.

Also, remind yourself of His kindness and His compassion towards you by dying in your place and blessing you.

Let these memories of God’s love motivate you to reflect His attributes. And let His Word, the Holy Bible, inspire you to practice His everlasting goodness within your life. Show fairness to everyone around you. Don’t treat any group of people less than another group of people.

Be kind and do everything you can to help others around you. And show compassion by asking God for a restoring love coming from within yourself, which yearns to bless those around you. In conclusion, make sure that you’re treating all with fairness, kindness, and compassion.

The Difference Between Superstition and Faith

Don’t tell me there’s no difference between superstition and faith. Because the sad reality is that many people, especially skeptics, like to brand faith as just another representation of superstitious belief. So, in this post, my goal is to outline the difference between superstition and faith to clear up all the confusion within our minds. And if you have questions, feel free to ask them in the comments section.

Superstition

What is superstition? Because if we’re going to discuss the difference between two things, we need to know what the two things are.

Superstition is the belief in the supernatural out of ignorance or fear. An example of superstition is when one carves a wooden humanoid figure and then prays to it for prosperity.

Isaiah 44:17-19 World English Bible (WEB)
17 The rest of it he makes into a god,
    even his engraved image.
He bows down to it
and worships,
    and prays to it, and says, “Deliver me; for you are my god!”

18 They don’t know, neither do they consider:
    for he has shut their eyes, that they can’t see;
    and their hearts, that they can’t understand.
19 No one thinks,
    neither is there knowledge nor understanding
to say,
    “I have burned part of it in the fire.
    Yes, I have also baked bread on its coals.
    I have roasted meat and eaten it.
    Shall I make the rest of it into an abomination?
    Shall I bow down to a tree trunk?”

Why is that superstition? It’s because the wooden figure is something someone makes which cannot hear their words, thus, being an ignorant belief.

Another example of superstition is the sacrifice of human beings to avoid the wrath of deities. This is superstitious because the person who practises such superstition is jeopardizing someone else out of fear that disobedience to their deities will incur punishment.

Now, the million dollar question is… does Biblical Christianity follow the path of superstition?

My answer to that is “no, quite the contrary.” And I’m going to explain how instead, the God of the Bible forges a new path to follow Him, a path called “faith.”

It’s not superstition, because the God of the Bible does not want you to believe in Him out of fear or ignorance. Let me prove this in the next section.

The Difference Between Superstition and Faith

Firstly, He does not want you to believe Him out of fear. That’s why He almost always says “fear not,” whenever He approaches a person in the Bible.

I mean, look at the verse below, the first thing God told Abraham in his vision was to not be afraid. God always makes it clear that He is the last person in the world to associate with worldly fear.

Genesis 15:1 World English Bible (WEB)
15 After these things Yahweh’s word came to Abram in a vision, saying, “Don’t be afraid, Abram. I am your shield, your exceedingly great reward.”

Secondly, the God of Abraham does not force you to believe Him out of ignorance, although, He does expect you to trust Him when things don’t make sense. And I’ll explain the latter part of what I said in the next section, but, for now, here’s an example of Him warning us of ignorant superstition.

Jeremiah 7:31 World English Bible (WEB)
31 They have built the high places of Topheth, which is in the valley of the son of Hinnom, to burn their sons and their daughters in the fire; which I didn’t command, nor did it come into my mind.

God was so upset with the people who burned their own children as a sacrifice to idols, and He even admitted that such a deed had never presented itself as a thought within the omniscient mind of God!

Ignorant human beings thought that by murdering their own children, they would please deities of their own making, this is something God cannot stand.

Faith

So, how does God want you to believe in Him? It’s quite simple. And we better not muddle it with our theories, laws, and superstitions. We better see it as He depicts it in His Word.

He wants us to believe in Him by faith.

Ephesians 2:8 King James Version (KJV)
For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:

What’s faith? It’s the belief in the God of the Bible where you trust Him through what He said in His Word (the Bible), and you know His grace and love.

His grace was revealed when God came down to Earth in the form of a human being as Lord Jesus Christ to die on the cross so that instead of God punishing you for your blunders, He would be sacrificed for you.

John 3:16 King James Version (KJV)
16 For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.

Lord Jesus Christ healed the sick, delivered the spiritually oppressed and blessed so many people during His ministry, but the religious leaders out of jealousy and fear, decided to crucify Him. Yet, this was all part of God’s plan to make the sacrifice for those who trust Him as their Lord and Saviour. I talk more about it in this post.

Therefore, put your faith in Christ Jesus as your Lord and Saviour to enter a relationship with God Almighty.

Faith is not superstition. It is the trust you put in God that He will do what He said He would do. It’s the acceptance of the creator who designed you and formed you in your mother’s womb. It is the realization that you’re significant and that you hold value in the eyes of your Heavenly Father.

This faith in Christ Jesus does not depend on your circumstances. If things aren’t going well for you, you must still trust God because He will make all things turn out for your good.

Faith is just another way of saying that God wants you to trust Him just like how you would trust someone in any other relationship. The difference between superstition and faith is tremendous so trust God; place your faith in Lord Jesus Christ.

Thanking the God of Heavenly Revelations

For most people, it is often easy to adapt the nasty attitude of ingratitude. And if there’s ever an attitude ranked as the worst of attitudes, that’d be ingratitude. Ingratitude affects your mind, your relationships, and shuts you off from a life-changing perspective. So, continue reading to find out the power of thanking God and others for being in your life.

Appreciation in Relationships

Now, appreciation is a very important thing. It is essential within relationships with friends and family. If someone does you a favour and you don’t thank them for it, your heart is ungrateful.

Moreover, ingratitude is very bad for one’s mental health. It’s not good for your relationships and goes to show how you take things for granted. In fact, patriotism for one’s nation is a form of gratitude and that is also very important.

2 Timothy 3:2 World English Bible (WEB)
For men will be lovers of self, lovers of money, boastful, arrogant, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy,

And the Bible says that in the future, people will become more and more ungrateful. In the verse above, it says that people will become unthankful as that is simply and sadly a trait of human nature. So, the decision is up to you, as always.

Do you want to give in to your corrupt, self-loving (selfish) nature, or do you want to do what is right? Since you are someone who wants to please God and be remembered as grateful, start acknowledging the great things people do for you.

Be grateful.

And that is very important with God, too. He makes it a part of your relationship with Him to be grateful. It’s deeply integrated to your spiritual health. In fact, that is why we have a phrase known as “Thank God.”

There are situations you may face where the only one you can depend on is the God of Revelations, Jesus Christ.

Psalm 100:4 World English Bible (WEB)
4 Enter into his gates with thanksgiving,
    and into his courts with praise.
    Give thanks to him, and bless his name.

His Word says to “enter into [H]is gates with thanksgiving,” because thanking God is a way of entering His presence. Furthermore, there is so much to thank Him for. If you can’t come up with anything to thank God for, then look unto the cross.

Thanking God Above All

When you look unto the cross of Calvary, you see the most gruesome appetites of human evil manifested on a single individual. That single individual is none other than our precious Lord Jesus Christ. He is God who came down to Earth, 2000 years ago, in the form of a man.

And He lived a life on this planet, healed people, set people free, and more in His ministry, but the jealous religious leaders of that time convinced their government to crucify Him. They tortured and crucified Him, but it was all part of His divine plan. His plan was to suffer the hell meant for us to save us.

John 10:18 World English Bible (WEB)
18 No one takes it away from me, but I lay it down by myself. I have power to lay it down, and I have power to take it again. I received this commandment from my Father.”

After three days and nights, He rose again from the dead, full of power and authority. So, when we believe Him, when we accept Jesus Christ as our Lord and Saviour, our hell transfers to the cross. Now, you only need to expect God to be with you through the easy as well as tough times. I talk more about it in this post.

He’ll always be at your side. This is what we call the Gospel, and your heart should fill up with thanksgiving to God for all He does for you. He let nails and whips tear Him apart to heal, deliver, save, and bless you. No one else would do that for you, but He did it.

Romans 5:7-8 World English Bible (WEB)
For one will hardly die for a righteous man. Yet perhaps for a good person someone would even dare to die. 8 But God commends his own love toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.

No one loves you as much as He loves you, so thank Him for what He’s done!

Life With Him

A life with Him is a life lived well, I can guarantee that! Bow your knee to God and thank Him for all He’s done for you. And keep on thanking Him for the things you don’t have yet know that He’ll provide for you.

“What! How can you say that, Andre?” is what some of you may be thinking. But, what I’m saying is nothing less than what the Bible says.

Philippians 4:6 World English Bible (WEB)
6 In nothing be anxious, but in everything, by prayer and petition with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God.

God does not want you to worry. He loves you, and whatever depth of suffering you endure, put your trust in His grace. The scripture above says to let God know your needs, you should thank Him for the solution.

He loves you so much because He created you, He formed you, and He decided how you were meant to be. And He wants His plan to come to fruition once you give Him everything you are.

Thank Him for healing because of the broken body of Jesus Christ, even if you are sick because then, He will heal you. Make it a point to give Him praise for the restoration of your mental health, because He will restore your mental health.

Take the communion!

Hebrews 11:1 King James Version (KJV)
11 Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.

Therefore, trust God and keep on thanking Him for all He’s done. Thanking Him and thanking others should become a thing associated with you. When people think of you, they should think of you as a grateful person. Thank God, above all, and allow God to take care of you.

John 11:40 King James Version (KJV)
40 Jesus saith unto her, Said I not unto thee, that, if thou wouldest believe, thou shouldest see the glory of God?