One of the first songs I ever learned to sing when I was a young child was “The Wise Man Built His House Upon a Rock.” It is good for me to remind you if you are following along, that I grew up going to church all my life, so if you did not grow up in church, you may not know this song. It is a song that is actually based upon Scripture found in Matthew chapter 7. In light of the last several months of record rainfall and damp weather…and the fact that I have been reading through the four gospels…Matthew 7:24-27 just jumps off the pages at me.
Jesus is teaching here, “Therefore everyone who hears these words of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house on THE rock. The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house; yet it did not fall, because it had its foundation on the rock. But everyone who hears these words of mine and does not put them into practice is like a foolish man who builds his house on sand. The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against the house, and it fell with a great crash” [emphasis mine].
It has taken me some years of adulting to realize how devastating too much water can be…from flooding from storms to an undetected leak that ruins much before you even know there is a leak. Being a homeowner for over 30 years now, and just having real life experiences along with learning from others’ experiences, I know for sure how to help our kids wisely buy or build a home. To the best of my ability I would influence them to buy on the high ground, double check that it is not in a flood plain, and pay money, if it is an existing home, to research the drain system and foundation under the house.
Through experience I have learned it is a terrible thing to plant trees near the sides of houses. The roots grow and can obstruct the foundation and the drainage system, if there is one. So if buying a home, I always check to see where the trees are planted. You can’t see the roots under the ground but you can bank on trees being near the outside of the house is not a good thing for the foundation or for drainage.
Scripture often refers to our bodies as temples, our dwelling place, much like a home. That is why Jesus was so specific and straight forward about how we should conduct our brief lives on this earth. Who wants their house to fall down? Who doesn’t want to be wise?
If I took a survey of people and asked them, “Hey, do you want to be wise?” I doubt anyone would say no! Referring back to the Scripture above, Jesus said to build your house on “THE” rock not “a” rock. Building our lives on Jesus and putting His word into practice, not just reading it but living it, provides for a sturdy, durable foundation for life.
The rain is gonna come. We just don’t know when or for how long. Just like the rain we had recently, it may come for long periods of time. But I haven’t lost sleep about the foundation of our home. Why? Because we built it and I know what the foundation consists of.
God’s Word is our manual for building the foundation of our lives. It is only as good as how we choose to apply it. God’s Word was given for our benefit. It is an architectural blueprint for our life on this earth.
Recently, we had a drawing done for our new Pelicans store in Athens, GA. The general contractor and master plumber said, “The specifics here and the accurate measurements by the architect are invaluable to keep from having major trouble down the road.” If that’s true for such a temporary thing as a store, how much more does it matters for our lives?
As you read along in the gospels, you will find many lessons Jesus personally taught while He lived his short, perfect life on earth. The Scripture that follows the passage quoted above says this, “When Jesus had finished saying these things, the CROWDS were amazed at his teaching, because he taught as one who had authority and not as their teachers of the law” (emphasis mine, Matthew 7:28). Amazement accurately describes how the crowds should have responded. Why? Because they were hearing from the master Architect!
Take a moment today to reflect on how your “house” is being built. Do you have a solid foundation? Are you seeking wisdom from the master Architect? If not, I challenge you to spend more time in the gospels I have been encouraging folks to read and ask God for wisdom.