Are you a Smart Carpenter?
When you are building a house, you search for the perfect site that reflects your personality and style. As you pour over the building plans, you dream and envision how the house will look on this awesome parcel of land that you found. In order to establish the house on the land, there must be some form of foundation to which it gets connected. The foundation is not meant to be the focal point of the house; however, it is the anchor. Since the integrity of the house depends on a sturdy foundation, this is a feature with which a smart contractor would take no short cuts or use substandard materials. It is formed with care, precision, high-quality materials and purpose, because it must be secure to effectively support the home.
Foundations are critical to our spiritual journey, as well. We were intended to have strong foundations meant to withstand the seasons in life through which we will journey.
I love way The Message translation describes this concept in Matthew 7:24-27:
“These words I speak to you are not incidental additions to your life, homeowner improvements to your standard of living. They are foundational words, words to build a life on. If you work these words into your life, you are like a smart carpenter who built his house on solid rock. Rain poured down, the river flooded, a tornado hit—but nothing moved that house. It was fixed to the rock. But if you just use my words in Bible studies and don’t work them into your life, you are like a stupid carpenter who built his house on the sandy beach. When a storm rolled in and the waves came up, it collapsed like a house of cards.”
One of the misnomers of the Christian walk is that our lives will be easy. In reality, the Christian walk is not an easygoing walk. The Scripture above states, “Rain poured down, the river flooded, a tornado hit – but nothing moved the house.” It is only when our foundation is sturdy and durable that we can withstand the storms of life. You’ll note that in the verse about the rain, flooding river and tornado are issues outside of our control. These are the things that “hit” us as we go through life, the difficult and painful seasons. They can assault us without warning, and we can feel unprepared.
The good news is that there is something we can do to maintain control. Like a smart carpenter we have the opportunity to build a solid foundation. Foundation construction, in the natural, takes hard work…it doesn’t just “happen!” This is true in our spiritual journey, as well. If we desire a strong foundation, it takes effort and determination on our part. Don’t get me wrong, we are saved through grace, not works! I’m not talking about salvation; I’m talking about growing strong in the Lord. Let me put it this way…The Master Carpenter (foundation builder/Father) invites us into an apprenticeship program (sons/daughters) to learn how to build a firm foundation. He has all the tools, blueprints, equipment (Scripture) and is ready to walk/build alongside us. However, the only way we truly learn is to put our focus on Him, humble ourselves, study and block-by-block establish our foundation.
And, when the storms come – and they will – we will not be swayed because our homes (vision, dreams, destiny and identity) are firmly anchored.