When a person is in the market to buy a house, he makes his assessment based on the physical size, the floor plan, the amenities that serve his particular needs, and the like. The truth is that the most important part of the house is hidden from view, which is its foundation. I say that because a house can be no stronger than its foundation is. The same thing can be said about our personal life; it must be built on a good foundation.
Regarding His teachings, Jesus said, “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.” (Matthew 7:24-25, NIV). I just love how Jesus uses the analogy of a person building a house. You see, just as this person had to build a foundation for his house, you and I must build a foundation for our life.
I want to point out two very important things that Jesus is saying in this passage. One is that the wise builder of life is the one who hears and puts into practice the Lord’s teachings. This will result in the person’s life being established upon a solid foundation. The second point has to do with the storms of life. Just as a literal house has to endure inclement weather, so we must weather life’s storms that manifest themselves as trials and difficulties.
Like literal storms, the trials of life are a given. Whether we acknowledge them or not, they will come. Whether we make preparations for them or not, they will come. God has never promised to exempt us from the tests of life. But He has given us His Word, which if we listen to and put into practice, we will be able to weather whatever it is that life sends our way. So if we want our marriage and our family to survive the storms of life, they must be built upon obedience to the Word of God.
Having been a Christian for 30 years, I have seen the following situation played out more times than once: A person unites with a local church, and comes to worship service, week after week. He never gets involved with any of the ministries in the church. He shows no passion for God. A nice person who seems to get along with everybody, but he’s passive toward the things of God. Then one day something happens. It’s a trial—a storm of life. The storm reveals the foundation—or the lack thereof in the person’s life. He is devastated. In some instances, the person even stops attending church altogether.
You see, any kind of building will suffice when the weather is good outside. But it is when bad weather comes that the foundation of a person’s life will be revealed.
It is important for us to we realize that all of us are building some kind of foundation for our life. Even when we listen to the Word of God and refuse to put it into practice, like the scenario I presented above, we are building a foundation. Jesus likens such a person to a foolish builder who built his house on the sand. And when the storm came, great was the fall of that house (see Matthew 7:26-27). Since we must build, let us choose to do so wisely.