Solid as a Rock
The word Foundation kept going through my head all day. I figure that God was trying to tell me something. I was on my way to work and the DJs were talking about having a faith grounded in Christ. They never go deeper than just a few soundbites. But they aren't there to chit chat and expound. When I arrived at work and sat at my desk, I was reminded of the crumbling foundation of the building I work in. All day long I struggle not to slide down hill. The previous occupant of this desk had a foot rest. It comes in handy to keep me centered on my desk and not sliding off to the left. It really is that bad.
Throughout my day I walk the hall from the front to the production area in the back. Loose tiles, warped walls, cracked windows, and buckled ceilings are all evidence of a poor foundation. I've learned to live with these dilapidated conditions. It's just a job. It isn't my home. Clearly the foundation of the building is the last thing on the mind of the owner. That is fine by me.
Every time it rains the roof leaks. I am reminded of the song we sang in Sunday school. The wise man built his house upon the rock. Luckily it doesn't leak over my desk. As a child our own roof leaked in the house my father built for us. Whenever it would storm we would find the leaks and set out bowls, pots and pans to catch the water. There was one rainy day in particular. Mom had picked up my sisters from school, but I didn't know and walked home in the rain. When I got to 15th street I was soaked to the bone, and remembered that I wasn't allowed to cross this street on my own. I stood in the rain crying. Luckily one of our neighbors came across the street and walked with me in the rain. She took me into her house and there were pots all over just like we had when it rained. I said, "Hey, you have pots in your house like we do!" She did not seem amused. She just said, "Yes, I know dear. Your father built my house, too."
I still find that funny, though when I told my dad that story later in life, he wasn't so amused. I think perhaps he was embarrassed that he didn't do a better job on the roofs of the houses he built. I don't know why he skimped on roofing. Only he knows for sure. Some things might sound good on paper, but in practice are not such great ideas.
One thing that do have is a spiritual foundation. Dad may not have taken care to make a solid roof, but he did take care to see to it that his family was grounded in the word of God. There isn't a time in my youth when I can remember not going to church. It wasn't just because Mom played the piano and the organ. It was because they wanted us to be raised knowing Jesus. I am very grateful for this.
I've not always remained a faithful church attender, but I know my Lord and He knows me. I miss church when I don't go. In the last few years it has made a huge difference. I once said to Justin, "I need to be in church every Sunday. When I go to church on Sunday my week is much better, fewer things go wrong." My favorite part of church is the worship. The teaching is fine, but I could worship for the full time and not miss a minute of the preaching. Most worship services bring me to tears. I don't just sing the words, I hear them and they touch my heart. I started lifting my hands in worship about 8 years ago, and I wonder why that was discouraged in the church where I grew up. Something about that lifting up of your hands in praise changes worship for me. Maybe it is the act of surrender and lifting Jesus up. I don't know.
Imagine Jesus building a house. Imagine Jesus as the foundation. No I don't mean he is laying on the ground while there are walls built on top of him. This is more of a figurative imagining. The Bible tells us that Jesus is the stone the builders rejected and has become the cornerstone. He is the word where we are established and firmly planted. He is that immovable foundation that cannot be changed, destroyed, cracked or shifted. He is solid. When you build on a sound foundation, you are sturdy. Being grounded in the word makes you strong and ready for the storms of life.
Imagine Jesus as the builder who brings us all together as one church. Our feet firmly planted on the Gospel, hands lifted in praise holding the roof, which is God's protection, perfect and leak-proof!
Stay established in the foundation of Jesus. There seems to be crazier times ahead in this world. If we keep focused on Jesus, who will never change, we can weather the storms that are coming and be a shelter for those who do not have that same foundation.
Matthew 7:24-27 "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 built his house on sand. The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house, and it fell with a great crash.”
Psalm 118:22 "The stone the builders rejected has become the cornerstone;"
1Corinthians 3:11 "For no one can lay any foundation other than the one already laid, which is Jesus Christ."
Hebrews 12:2 "Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God.