A few months ago my son asked me to install a basketball goal in the driveway. He had played some games at school and got excited about getting better. I thought it was a great idea. We already had a backboard and rim in hand. All we needed was a pole to attach it to. So I bought a pole, got some post-hole diggers and went to work. I simply dug a couple feet down, put the pole in the hole, leveled it, and packed the remaining dirt in the hole. Do you want to guess what happened to the basketball goal when we started playing on it and running in to the pole? It moved. It leaned. And if we wanted, we could have pulled the entire thing down.
So what did I do in response? I pulled the pole out of the hole, gathered more tools & resources (shovel, post-hole diggers, concrete mix, & water). This time I was more adamant about solidifying the basketball goal in the ground. I went wider with the hole and deeper into the ground. I poured cement mix and water into it. Once all that was done, we let the goal stand for a day to let the cement dry. It worked well…until about 5 days later when I pulled out of the garage and backed my car into the pole. Do you want to guess what happened this time? It moved! It started leaning. Even though I had taken greater precautions the second time, the fact is that the pole needs to go deeper if it is going to survive at the Limbaugh hacienda. It needs to go deeper in the ground and be cemented in a greater way if it is going to withstand the beating of day-to-day life in this world. There are going to be guys who try to dunk on it, boys who try to climb on it, and drivers who crash into it. So we need to go even deeper.
This is the deal: Life is hard in this world for just about everybody. The Christian life especially can be very hard. We have the devil, who is constantly tempting us to disbelieve the promises & providence of God. We have the world, who is steadily trying to seduce us to worship & serve the creation rather than the Creator. We have our own flesh, that always wants to rise up within us and fulfill the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life. The devil, the world, and the flesh are seeking to prevent us from joyfully & obediently loving God & others. If we are going to stand strong in this world for Jesus Christ, we must go deeper! We must get stronger. We must be deeply rooted in the soil of the Gospel and firmly cemented by the power of Christ’s death & resurrection. Because if we aren’t, the trials & temptations of life are going to happen, and we’re not going to be able to stand firm. We’re going to lean and we’re going to fall, if we aren’t dug down deep.
So what should we do? Should we just sit around and wait for the storms to come? No! We need to go deeper into the things of God today, to prepare us for the challenges of life tomorrow. I don’t know if there is a better book in the Bible to go deeper in the rich soil of the Gospel than the book of Colossians. So we’re going to study this little book for the next 24 weeks, trusting the Savior to do a mighty work in our hearts, in our lives, and in our church. You can listen to my introductory sermon for the “Deeper” series on our Sermons page. I encourage you to listen to it and go on this journey together with our church.