Addressing the Root Causes

Inspiration MinistriesBy Inspiration MinistriesNovember 25, 20132 Minutes

“A small victorious war.” This was what Viacheslav Plehve, the Russian Minister of the Interior, felt was the solution to his country’s problems. People were becoming restless and wanted change. Plehve (and others) felt that a war would “hold Russia back from revolution.”

This was in January 1904, and he thought growing disagreements with Japan provided such an opportunity. But he was wrong. The resulting Russo-Japanese War was not a glorious victory for Russia, but rather a crushing defeat. Instead of holding back revolution, the war unleashed further unrest and became a turning point in Russian history.

Plehve and others were not thinking about the root issues, but merely the symptoms. We see this kind of attitude throughout society, even today. Many seek to cure headaches with pills. They drown depression with alcohol. They try to solve marriage problems with divorce. They seek to find meaning by running from experience to experience.

John the Baptist recognized that many people who approached him were dealing only with symptoms. He told them, “The axe is laid unto the root of the trees.” He wanted people to understand that God wants to deal with root causes, not superficial appearances.

We all face problems. But too often we focus on the symptoms and ignore the true causes. Unfortunately, symptoms can be easy to spot and deal with. Roots, in contrast, can be hard to find and painful to remove.

If we want victory, we need God’s help to get at the root. We need the Holy Spirit to probe our hearts and minds, revealing our true motivations, habits, and thoughts.

In your life, don’t just deal with surface issues. Ask God to expose the root of your problems so you can lead a more victorious life.