Rock or Sand?

[Jesus says,]“Anyone who listens to my teaching and follows it is wise, like a person who builds a house on solid rock.25 Though the rain comes in torrents and the floodwaters rise and the winds beat against that house, it won’t collapse because it is built on bedrock. 26 But anyone who hears my teaching and doesn’t obey it is foolish, like a person who builds a house on sand.27 When the rains and floods come and the winds beat against that house, it will collapse with a mighty crash.”      – Matthew 7:24-27 (NLT)

What is the foundation of my life? Is it the shifting sand of what the world sells? Is it the bedrock of Jesus Christ?

From the outside, the part of me that people perceive because it’s what I want them to see, it may appear I am no different than a believer in everything or the one who believes in nothing. A contractor can build a house on sand for $100,00 and make it appear no different than the home built on bedrock for $1 million. But Jesus warns that when the rains come, the difference in the construction will be seen by all.

For four years prior to my son’s diagnosis of cancer, God gave me a hunger for His Word. I read 2-3 hours every day and it did not seem like any time at all! Then during the year James was in chemotherapy the reading and studying that I had done came back to me in moments when I was so afraid or so confused. God’s promises, who He is, and how much He loves His children was spoken to me, over and over.

Today we look at the civil unrest in St. Louis, the Ebola outbreak, the wars in the Middle East and northern Africa and we wonder where is God and what is He doing? He is doing what He has done throughout history. He is here.

The question I am asking should be directed towards myself, not God. Where am I in all of this? What am I doing about the sickness and evil of the world. “Who? Me?”

Jesus answered that very question in Matthew’s same Sermon on the Mount. I don’t use The Message often but it is a paraphrase that can speak plainly.

Let me tell you why you are here. You’re here to be salt-seasoning that brings out the God-flavors of this earth. If you lose your saltiness, how will people taste godliness? You’ve lost your usefulness and will end up in the garbage.

Here’s another way to put it: You’re here to be light, bringing out the God-colors in the world. God is not a secret to be kept. We’re going public with this, as public as a city on a hill. If I make you light-bearers, you don’t think I’m going to hide you under a bucket, do you? I’m putting you on a light stand. Now that I’ve put you there on a hilltop, on a light stand—shine! Keep open house; be generous with your lives. By opening up to others, you’ll prompt people to open up with God, this generous Father in heaven.” Matthew 5:13-16 (The Message)

The spiritual structure that God has built in me is not just for me. I am to be a “open house” to others so that they will see God. My spiritual life must be on the solid foundation which is Jesus. The walls are to be like glass so that others will see Him and follow Him. My house should be clean but have a well-lived look that says I have lots of company; people who come through for encouragement, rest, and wisdom as they travel on their own path of life.

I encourage you to join me in reading Psalm 105. It’s a good one for building!

Give praise to the Lord, proclaim his name; make known among the nations what he has done… (verse 1, NIV)

Sandyland from Psalty’s Singing SongBook

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