When my husband and I were building our first home, it seemed to take a long time to get to the point where the slab was being poured. There were many things that needed to happen before this point, including excavation, soil testing – anyone who has built a house would know what I am talking about here! But then all of a sudden that slab would be down and the rest of the house seemed to be built rather quickly. Yet here I was growing impatient with the amount of time it took for the foundation to be laid because I wanted the finished product.
Seems like a bit of an oxymoron, but how often in life do we do this?
It’s like a house that’s been renovated, but not well. Corners have been cut to get it done cheaper and faster which seems fine now but not in the long run. Or perhaps we want the brand new car without having to put away money for it week in, week out.
In the book of Matthew Jesus tells a Parable of two builders. The wise man builds his house on a rock and the other builds his house on the sand. The wise man built their house, their foundation upon a rock, indicating it was firm and strong so when the rain came and the wind blew (unfavoured situations/circumstances) it remained, and the other built his house upon the sand so when the rain came, streams rose and winds blew, it fell with a great crash .
Often what we want in life is to be healthy, have a great devotional life, a thriving marriage, a connected family, growing church family, a successful business; but it takes time to build strong foundations. Strong foundations that have taken time, patience, devotion, endurance, conviction, steadfastness, consistency, hard work, discipline etc.
Our old neighbour had the most stunning, well-kept garden. There were constantly different flowers blooming in each season, it was never overgrown with weeds. It was just beautiful but what I did notice was that he used to tend to it every day. Every day he would be out there either watering, pulling up weeds, pruning the plants. He clearly understood that a beautiful garden doesn’t just happen by osmosis, it takes time and diligence.
Recently I was saddened and shocked to hear of the breakdown of a couple who had been married for quite some time. Shocked because they used to upload the most loving posts about each other on Facebook and so I assumed they must have such a strong, caring marriage. Only to learn perhaps it was to cover up for what was really going on.
We all need strong foundations in our lives and to continue to build strong foundations in our Christian walk and what we believe to be true. Strong foundations lead to a stronger more unified and peaceful workplace, marriage, family home, church and the list goes on. This way when a business man or woman is offered a great but dubious business deal they make the right decision. This way when a career man or woman sees something unethical going on in the workplace they address it. This way when a parent notices something off with their child after having picked them up from school, they show more interest than usual and ask more questions.
We can build our lives on foundational truths because we have the great foundation of all. Scripture says that He will be the sure foundation for your times; a rich store of salvation and wisdom and knowledge; the fear of the Lord is the key to this treasure .
How do we build strong foundations?
We build strong foundations in our lives by always remaining a learner and a seeker of the truth. Discuss why you believe what you believe with others, do a study on what God’s word says about the topic and last but not least, pray. God will always lead you and guide you into all truth and we can be sure that if we build our lives upon strong foundations, whatever we have built will remain.
Elise Pappas is a Pastor and together with her husband pastor a church on the Sunshine Coast in Queensland, Australia. They have a son, Jonathan and a daughter, Sophie. Elise is a former clinical drug trial research coordinator and business owner. She writes about life and ministry experiences.