TCK Letters: Rooted

Dear Friend,

I have a pleasant surprise for you! Breanne is back here again to give us another insight. 

I was scrolling through my Instagram feed, and saw a post asking TCKs what music helped them cope with the challenges in the TCK life. As I read the comments, one title in particular caught my eye. The song was about having no roots. Although I didn’t adore the artist’s style of music, her words intrigued me. As a TCK, she had moved around constantly as a child, and she referred to herself as a gypsy travelling in the night, and consequently didn’t have any roots. 

For all TCKs, however you explain it, the feeling is the same. We don’t belong anywhere, we don’t know where home is, and we don’t have deep roots that bind us to a particular place.  

I have also been reading through Colossians for my quiet time, and one passage made me think about this topic. 

“As ye have therefore received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk ye in him: Rooted and built up in him, and stablished in the faith, as ye have been taught, abounding therein with thanksgiving.”

Colossians 2:6-7 KJV

Just as we received Jesus as our Lord and Savior, we are supposed to walk in Him, which means we should live in a way that pleases Him, in His footsteps. How are we supposed to walk in Him? We should be rooted and built up in Him.

Rooted. It means getting all the popular culture references, knowing the slang, and knowing everyone in your neighbourhood. More than that though, it means feeling at home when you walk into a place. It means having deep ties with a town. It means feeling distinctly one thing. It means feeling patriotic. It means having one language, one culture, and one place embedded into the wiring of your brain and the emotion of your heart. 

Roots, in themselves, are the “feeders” of the plant. They soak up and store all this water and nutrients so that the plant can grow strong and large. If you are rooted in a particular country, this is where you have gotten a big part of the information and teaching and experience that feeds you and grows you up into the person you have become. 

Let’s address the elephant in the room, shall we? TCKs aren’t very rooted. Not in one place at least. This will differentiate from person to person, depending on how much they moved around when they were young. However, I think we all can agree that we lack the geographical roots of our brothers and sisters who have lived in one place their whole lives. 

I, for example, have moved eight times, once internationally, and have been to six schools throughout my life. My life-long memories are not of houses and schools. They are of family, and sometimes, the city I grew up in. The thing is, I can never say that I completely belong in that city either because I am not a local. Even if I have some roots in that city, they are not to be compared to the deep roots my local friends have.

But here’s the cool thing: Paul and Timothy are saying we should be rooted in Christ. Not in an area or a culture. Not that being rooted in those things is bad, but it’s not foremost. What is bad is being rooted in sin and in the world and flesh.   

Above all, Jesus Christ should be our source from which we draw our spiritual nutrients and food that help us grow in our walk with Him. The deeper we have roots in Jesus and His Word, the stronger we will be when faced with life’s challenges: we will be built up in Him. We can be like a tree with deep roots, so when a storm of change, or lies, or guilt, or difficulty comes, we will not fall. A tree that brings fruit and doesn’t wither (Psalm 1:3).

Jesus is where we need to be rooted in. Fellow TCKs, do not mourn your lack of roots in a country. Learn to be rooted in the One Place that really matters.

This is my prayer for you:

“For this cause I bow my knees unto the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, Of whom the whole family in heaven and earth is named, That he would grant you, according to the riches of his glory, to be strengthened with might by his Spirit in the inner man; That Christ may dwell in your hearts by faith; that ye, being rooted and grounded in love, May be able to comprehend with all saints what is the breadth, and length, and depth, and height; And to know the love of Christ, which passeth knowledge, that ye might be filled with all the fulness of God.” 

Ephesians 3:14-19 KJV (Emphasis added)


Image by Breanne Eckman

Breanne Eckman is a 16-year-old writer, artist, sister, TCK, and Jesus-follower.  She wrote Painful Goodbyes Are Good. In the future, she will have a section in her blog dedicated to TCKs. You can also find her on Instagram @breannewrites.

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