Catching onto the Roots Rhythm
Note: this page assumes you already saw the "5G Flow" of the Roots Rhythm
The rhythm of Roots Season is the rhythm of belonging to something bigger and better than ourselves. That something is ancient, good, and pure. It is the best cause we could ever sign up for. It is the ultimate global movement, and it was never a human brainchild. It is "Group 1A." God started it himself through someone who trusted him--Abraham.
The mission of the descendants of Abraham is to bring blessing that breaks whatever curse people feel they are under. That should make Abraham's descendants the natural allies of everyone who feels, "If it weren't for bad luck, I'd have no luck at all."
The blessing that Group 1A brings is a lot more than a free meal or some other act of kindness. And it is not mere advice to look on the bright side of things and be tougher during the hard times. The blessing is the blessing of belonging to an amazing group or movement and enjoying all the security and significance that goes along with that.
Roots Season is the time to re-SYNC with the purpose of Group 1A if you are already an insider or to join it if you haven't. Catch onto the Roots Rhythm (see list below) and start moving with it. The God of Abraham will be your God. You will be blessed, and you will be a blessing.
Catching onto the Roots Rhythm - getting the idea and the feel of it
Whole Bible - the Roots Rhythm as the main thread of the whole biblical story
Security, significance and Roots Season (February 26 - April 4, 2020)
Like all the other SYNC seasons, Roots Season links you back to something huge God has done. To "SYNC" with that God-thing means to align yourself with God's intentions when he did it.
In this case the God-thing is the promise of God to Abraham that through him all families on earth would be blessed. Roots Season celebrates that, and for two very good reasons. It tells us that God is working his "Abraham Strategy" for everyone's good and that global peace is possible. If we go along with the strategy, the world becomes a better place, and we find all the security, significance, value, and companionship we will ever need.
The promise to Abraham also tips us off to a key feature of the entire story of the world. The Bible tells the story in a counter-intuitive way. Every one of God's game-changers comes as a surprise, just as a great novelist keeps surprising us with twists and turns in the plot.
God chose to use one particular group or nation to bring his blessing to all the rest. The "logical" way for him to do this would have been to choose a heavyweight nation, a huge, influential nation to be his God-group. If that nation would use its immense resources for God's plan, the whole world would soon know it and thank God.
But God does a surprising thing. He chooses an individual not a nation. And that is not the end of the surprises. That individual, Abraham, is fairly wealthy and well-connected, but God uproots him from his homeland and transplants him to start from scratch in a land where he owns nothing and has no political or ethnic connections.
Abraham and his wife Sarah have no children and are already past child-bearing age. In fact, they are so far past it that Sarah pushes Abraham to father a child by her servant, Hagar, so Abraham could have a biological heir. He does that, but then God gets more specific about his promise, telling him that his family through Sarah is the family that will bless every other family on the planet!
The next year Sarah miraculously has a son, but the biggest surprise does not come till that son is an adolescent. God tells Abraham to kill his son as a human sacrifice! It is a riveting story. (Genesis 22:1-19. Spoiler alert: the son survives.)
We should be able to see the moral of the story: "Never, never, never refuse to do something God's way just because you can't see how he could possibly make it work for good. He will unforgettably surprise you."
The Abraham story shows us that God can make something out of nothing. That gives us amazing security. It means that life isn't about what I can do for God, how much blessing I can deliver. It's about what he can do through me if I trust him to include me in the process of spreading his blessing. That trust is what we call "SYNCing with the Roots Rhythm," or "SYNCing with God's Abraham Strategy."
So the theme of Roots Season is, "Embrace the promise! Find your security and significance there!"
Look what you are getting in on. Look at the significance of the physical descendants of Abraham and Sarah--the Jews. Ask why they are less than 0.2% of the world's population but have won more than 20% of the Nobel Prizes, possibly the closest thing we have to a global measure of blessings to the world. That is 100 times more prizes than they should have won. Is that a fluke or one aspect of the fulfillment of an ancient promise?
Look at the significance of the spiritual descendants of Abraham--the followers of Jesus the Messiah, whether Jewish or Christian. Ask what they have done to spread education, to preserve languages, to wipe out barbaric abuse of women in India, disease in Africa, corruption and degradation everywhere. We sadly agree that the descendants of Abraham have also done a lot of harm, but only when they lost sight of the Abraham story and got out of SYNC with the Roots Rhythm. Let us pay better attention to the rhythm than they did.
Roots Season is the second of seven seasons in the SYNC annual cycle. In the first season, humanity fell under a curse. In Roots Season, God begins the process that runs through all six of the others seasons. He begins to break that curse for us and replace it with blessing. That process is the story of the world.
FAQs about the Roots rhythm
1. How do I know if I am already in Group 1A or not? If I wanted to get in, how would I do it?
The simplest way to tell if you are already in Group 1A is to ask yourself where you get your security and significance. If it has anything to do with God's Abraham Strategy and you getting adopted through Jesus into the group at the center of the strategy, you are in.
If not, or if you aren't sure what any of that means, read the "Who Are We?" story called "Uprooted" (2 min.) and ask whether you see yourself as part of that story. The "Reflections" at the end of the story include five ways to tell whether you are in or not.
If you are not in but want to be, the way to get in is basically to respond to the story by saying, "I'm in," the same way you might say, "I'm in" when someone asked you whether you wanted to go along on a trip or take part in a business deal. Obviously you have to understand the trip or the business deal. Otherwise it doesn't mean anything to say, "I'm in," and you will opt out pretty quickly.
In this case, your "I'm in," means, "OK, God of Abraham. Sign me up. I see what you are doing, and I like it. I want to belong to Group 1A and share in its purpose of bringing your blessing to the world. I'm not saying I'm qualified, but I am saying I believe Jesus Christ died to get me onto this team, and I'm saying yes to that. And I'm not going half-way. All my other loyalties have to take second place behind this new one."
Unlike your physical DNA, fixed permanently at birth, your spiritual DNA can change, and it does when you join Group 1A. The transformed inner DNA is a gift that comes as you SYNC with the good intentions God had for everyone when he made the promise to bless all through Abraham.
You are a different person because you belong to this group. This is where the idea of being "born again" comes from. The old you was an outsider to Group 1A. The new you is an insider, belonging as completely as if you were born into it. Spiritually speaking, you were.
2. "Blessing the world" is a lot for God to ask of us, isn't it? Won't this turn into a colossal chore?
It can feel like one but it won't if we realize that the whole Abraham Strategy goes back to a promise not a command. God does not command Abraham to have enough descendants to bless the whole world. Abraham can't do that, and he knows he can't. God promises Abraham, an old man with a barren wife, that he will have enough descendants to bless the whole world.
As to Abraham, God's command to us is not, "Bless the world." The command is, "Trust me." And "trust me" never turns into a chore. It does get very risky, as it did for Abraham, but then God keeps his promise and we are more grateful than we were before we took the risk.
Like Abraham, we don't have what it takes to keep God's promises for him. He has to keep them himself. When he keeps them through us as the spiritual descendants of Abraham, we are in on it but it isn't really us who are doing it. God is making it happen, which means we can relax and just do whatever he decides to do through us.
3. What if the world doesn't want to be blessed the way the God-group wants to bless it?
People with good intentions can make a real nuisance of themselves sometimes. Even worse, they can become truly dangerous when they believe they are supposed to enforce their good intentions on others. This is true whether the groups are religious people, right-wing fascists, or left-wing revolutionaries.
They want to bless the world, but they want to do it by persuading or forcing others to give them more power. "If only we concentrate enough power in our own hands, our plan will work. In the end, we will make the world such a wonderful place that everyone will thank us, that is, everyone we have not had to suppress or eliminate in order to make the world wonderful."
In the case of Group 1A, Abraham's descendants, God prevents this by giving them not a command to bless but a promise that the world will be blessed through them. That means they do not have to force things, which means they do not have to seek more power. They can afford to bless others as God instructs them even if that looks like a lame approach, too weak to change anything.
Jesus is the case in point. He was sent to take power from Group 1A and from the whole Group 1 in order to rule the world as God wanted it to be ruled. But the leaders of Group 1A and Group 1, which in his day were the Jewish religious leaders and the Roman imperial leaders, conspired to reject and kill him.
Jesus showed the way that Group 1A is supposed to work--accept death rather than kill to impose blessing on your own terms. Leave it to God to redeem the situation when it seems too late. That is exactly what God the Father did when he raised Jesus, God the Son, from the grave.
The risen Jesus did not then go on to ram his blessings down the throats of the people who had killed him. Instead he sent Group 1A out into the world "like sheep among wolves" (Matthew 10.16). The whole New Testament is full of passionate instructions to people who hit fierce, even deadly, opposition while they are trying to deliver blessings. It gives no guidance at all to people who want to force their blessings on others.