Bread – Foundations

October 8, 2012

Readings for Monday, October 8, designated by the 1979 Book of Common Prayer: Hosea 14:1-9; Acts 22:30-23:11; Luke 6:39-49; Psalm 106


In today’s reading from Luke, Jesus says: “Why do you call me ‘Lord, Lord,’ and not do what I tell you? Everyone who comes to Me and hears My words and does them, I will show you what he is like: he is like a man building a house, who dug deep and laid the foundation on the rock. And when a flood arose, the stream broke against the house and could not shake it, because it had been well built. But the one who hears and does not do them is like a man who built a house on the ground without a foundation. When the stream broke against it, immediately it fell, and the ruin of that house was great.” Lk. 6:46-49

Throughout my legal carrier, there have been many people who have come to me with foundation problems with their houses. In fact, I have a foundation problem right now with my house.

Why do we have foundation problems with our houses? A glib answer would say it is because we live in North Texas. A more accurate answer is that either the foundation was not built originally as it should have been, with appropriate thickness and steel, or the ground underneath it has decayed because it has not been watered or it has otherwise not been taken care of properly. Another reason which is often given is that it does not rest upon rock, but instead floats on top of shifting soil.

Why do we have foundation problems in our walk? Jesus tells us that there are three reasons. The first reason, and the reason for those who are not Christians, is that they have not “come to Him.” A foundation to be solid needs to be tied into the rock of the earth. What better tie-in than to the creator of those rocks, Jesus Christ.

The second reason our life foundation may have stresses and cracks, and may not be able to support us adequately, is that we need to “hear His (Jesus’) words.” It is not enough to know about Him and, in and of itself, it is not enough to know Him as personal Lord and Savior. Jesus says that, for us to have a strong foundation, we must know His word, Holy Scripture. We must so digest it that it is part of us. Every Wednesday we read part of Psalm 119. This Psalm ends this way – “Let Your hand be ready to help me, for I have chosen Your precepts. I long for Your salvation, O Lord, and Your law is my delight. Let my soul live and praise You, and let Your rules help me. I have gone astray like a lost sheep; seek Your servant, for I do not forget Your commandments.” Ps. 119:173-176 How can we say this if we do not know what His precepts are, what His law is, what His rules are, and what His commandments are? How do we know what these things are if we do not study them, digest them, and learn them, so they become our superstructure, our rules for action, integrated throughout our very being.

Then, finally, Jesus says that, if we are to have a strong foundation, we must “do” His words. It is not enough to know Him and it is not enough to have an intellectual appreciation for Scripture, we must implement what we learn. We must do it. We must walk the walk.

One more thing to note. Water runs downhill. As a result, think about where the house is built in Jesus’ story. It is built at the bottom of the hil; it is built in the valley, in the pit of life. The house is not built in a lofty place, above the fray. It is built in the world, where it will be hammered by the flood, where the world’s torrent of hatred, of fear, of aggression, and of hellish power will crash against it. It is built where people live. It is built were we live.

Do you feel that your house, your being, is built on solid rock or shifting earth? Is your house leaning or collapsing? Is your soul bending to life, or standing against it?

If your house is collapsing, you are not alone for two reasons. The first is that there are a lot of people in the same boat, sometimes only every so often and other times seemingly all of the time. The second is that Jesus has told you how to establish yourself for all time. He does not leave you alone to your own devices – He tells you what to do. First, come to Him. Second, listen to Him. Third, do what He says to do.

Why do we spend all of our time fixing our broken foundations, when we know what we need to do to build them right the first time?

Why do we spend all of our time trying to fix ourselves, when we have the roadmap to the place where no storm can overcome us, no evil befall us, no despair overtake us, no loss engulf us? Why do we just not do what Jesus says to do – come to Him; listen to Him; obey Him.

When we do these things, life will not be easier. The flood and the storm will still come and crash against our house. And the foundation may shake, but it will hold. And our house will stand … forever.


© 2012 GBF


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