Gleanings: Living With Deep Roots

A few days ago (April 5), Henri Nouwen’s Bread for the Journey spoke words I want to pass on to you—reminding myself and you that it’s only when we live deeply that we live well….

Trees that grow tall have deep roots.  Great height without great depth is dangerous.  The great leaders of this world – like St. Francis, Gandhi, and Martin Luther King, Jr., – were all people who could live with public notoriety, influence, and power in a humble way because of their deep spiritual rootedness.

Without deep roots we easily let others determine who we are.  But as we cling to our popularity, we may lose our true sense of self.  Our clinging to the opinion of  others reveals how superficial we are.  We have little to stand on.  We have to be kept alive by adulation and praise.   Those who are deeply rooted in the love of God can enjoy human praise without being attached to it.

- Henri J. M. Nouwen

About Steve Harper

Retired seminary professor, who taught for 32 years in the disciplines of Spiritual Formation and Wesley Studies. Author and co-author of 42 books. Also a retired Elder in The Florida Annual Conference of The United Methodist Church.
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