Matthew 7:24-27Amplified Bible
The Two Foundations
24 “So everyone who hears these words of Mine and acts on them, will be like a wise man [a far-sighted, practical, and sensible man] who built his house on the rock. 25 And the rain fell, and the floods and torrents came, and the winds blew and slammed against that house; yet it did not fall, because it had been founded on the rock. 26 And everyone who hears these words of Mine and does not do them, will be like a foolish (stupid) man who built his house on the sand. 27 And the rain fell, and the floods and torrents came, and the winds blew and slammed against that house; and it fell—and great and complete was its fall.”
The Word of God for the Children of God. Gloria! In Excelsis Deo! Alleluia! Amen.
In our Gospel narrative story of the wise and foolish builders, Jesus explains that it’s not enough to hear God’s Word.
We also have to put it into practice.
We need to live, love and breathe in and breathe out the choice: obey the Lord and seek to follow and to serve him with all our heart, soul, mind and strength.
Picture the two kinds of people in the illustrations Jesus gives here.
Both hear his words, but one puts them into practice and the other does not.
One hears and obeys; the other hears and ignores.
Both have had the same basic instruction.
But while one follows the proven practice of building on a firm foundation, the other ignores that wisdom and builds a house that has no foundation at all.
Jesus is using a simple illustration that even children can understand.
Among his listeners, everyone knew that only a fool would try to build a house without a foundation.
A house like that would fall apart in the path of a heavy storm.
But a house with a firm foundation would withstand many storms.
Similarly, Jesus was saying, we must put God’s words into practice.
The only way to build a life that will last is to base it on the firm foundation of God and his Word.
As the psalmist had said many years earlier, “The LORD is my rock, my fortress and my deliverer; my God is my rock, in whom I take refuge” (Psalm 18:2).
As we consider these Words of God today, in truth, how well can we say that?
As we faithfully ponder and meditate upon these Words of God today, in truth, how much faith-filled faith do we choose to have and exercise in these days?
It’s easy to have faith in God when things are going well.
But what about when life gets tough, and it feels like He’s nowhere to be found?
Here are 3 ways to exercise our hearts, souls and minds to build a foundation of strong, enduring faith in God when life inevitably, subtly, suddenly gets hard.
Faith In God Through Prayer
First things first: pray.
Proverbs 27:17Amplified Bible
As iron sharpens iron,
So, one man sharpens [and influences] another [through discussion].
Talk to God like you would a friend.
Tell Him what’s going on and how you’re feeling.
Connect and engage and relate with God! Ask for his help and guidance.
Prayer will connect us with God even when we are feeling lost or alone.
He is a God who hears us.
Study Scripture, Increase Your Faith
Another thing which has helped me maintain my faith is studying Scripture.
There are so many passages and verses throughout the Bible that offer comfort and hope in times of trouble.
When I’m struggling, I will often turn to familiar passages like Psalm 46:1-3:
“God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble. Therefore we will not fear, though the earth should change and though the mountains shake in the heart of the sea; though its waters roar and foam and the mountains tremble with its tumult.”
These “go to” verses reminds me that no matter the severity of what happens, God my Father is always going to be with me, and he will never leave me alone.
Get Moving and Get Serving
Finally, we build our faith by choosing to move forward and serving others.
When I am outwardly focused on helping others, it helps me zoom out.
My fears become dim and more distant. My troubles gradually become small.
When we actively partner with the Holy Spirit, we see just how big our God is.
Jesus Didn’t Promise Easy
In John 16:33b, Jesus said:
“In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.”
Inevitably life will certainly become hard—but in the end, Jesus always wins.
And so do we.
1 Corinthians 15:57-58Amplified Bible
57 but thanks be to God, who gives us the victory [as conquerors] through our Lord Jesus Christ.
58 Therefore, my beloved brothers and sisters, be steadfast, immovable, always excelling in the work of the Lord [always doing your best and doing more than is needed], being continually aware that your labor [even to the point of exhaustion] in the Lord is not futile nor wasted [it is never without purpose].
By disciplining ourselves, we build our houses – praying, studying Scripture, serving others, we will stay connected to God even when we feel lost or alone.
Let’s not only hear the Word, but also obey it.
In God’s strength we can build houses which will withstand whatever comes!
In God’s strength we can build churches which will withstand whatever comes!
In God’s strength we can build up and we can edify God’s Neighborhood which will withstand whatever comes.
Whether sunshine or rain, whether severest droughts or mightiest hurricanes, with God on our side, we can do all things through Christ who strengthens us!
In the name of God, the Father and God the Son and God the Holy Spirit,
Let us Pray,
My Father, You are the author and sustainer of my soul. Lord, I thank You for the strength that You give. Through Your Scriptures, You embolden me with courage and cause me to stand upright. I am so grateful for Your presence in my life. In all of life, may I turn to You for an increase in these qualities. Keep me from looking within myself or to sources other than You. I thank You in the name of the Son. Amen.