Faithful. Steadfast. Planted. Rooted. Immovable.
These are a few of the words that led us to our theme for 2023. I have to be honest and transparent with you... 2022 was a hard year for me. I have struggled and I am still struggling…mentally, physically, and emotionally. I feel myself and my family being attacked from all sides. Until this very moment, I haven't even thought about questioning why. Why am I being attacked? Why is my family being attacked? The truth is…I already know the answer. I don't even need to question it. The devil/satan means to cause confusion, weariness, discord, pain, and suffering. He prides himself on destroying us, our peace, our happiness, and most of all our love and obedience to the Lord. If we have the smallest weakness or crack in our foundation, he will pick at it until it breaks. Many years ago, he broke me. I was so in love with Jesus! He was my rock. He was my husband’s rock. We were in church every time the doors were open. It was an amazing time…until it wasn’t. Satan knew he was losing his grasp on us both. We were no longer longing for the things of this world. Then one day he found the smallest tiny little knick in that rock. He knew exactly how to split that rock wide open and make it crumble. It took us about five years to recover from that and start growing closer to God again. Since then I have learned many things about what it means to be obedient and faithful to the Lord. I have learned that no matter what has happened in my life to break me, I will not let it have control over me now. I can only do that by remaining faithful to Christ, being rooted firmly in His word, and allowing Him to “heal the cracks”.
We, as Christians, should expect these attacks from satan. He wants to drag us away from the only One who can defeat him. 1 Peter 5:8-9 says, ”Be alert and of sober mind. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour. Resist him, standing firm in the faith, because you know that the family of believers throughout the world is undergoing the same kind of suffering.”
I believe that through this last year of struggle, the Lord gave me (and the other Kollao ladies) those words listed above. They are different, yet all the same. As we discussed what the Lord had laid on our hearts, three verses/passages stood out to us. From these three, we were given our theme for the year:
Rooted in Faith 1 Cor. 15:58
Rooted in Christ Col. 2:6-7
Rooted in Love Eph 3:16-19
1 Corinthians 15:58 says, “Therefore, my dear brothers and sisters, stand firm. Let nothing move you. Always give yourselves fully to the work of the Lord, because you know that your labor in the Lord is not in vain.”
I think back to that time when I was broken and wonder how life would be different now if we had been faithful, stood firm, been immovable. Our lives might look completely different than they do now. While I do look back on that time with sadness, I know that God uses all things for good. He has used that time in my life in many ways since then. I am sure there will be purpose in my current struggles, as well. But, there is one difference between the past me and the current me…I am now Deeply Rooted.