To Build a Life . . .
24 “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. 25 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. 26 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. 27 The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house, and it fell with a great crash.” – Jesus, in Matthew 7:24-26
Have you ever built something? A toy car or a casserole, a business or a swing set? If so, you likely have learned that it takes a bit of careful planning and diligent execution. Some ingredients don’t belong in the casserole; others do. And if the swing set is too flimsy it won’t swing – not safely, and not for long. In each of these thing, key decisions need to be made about what to build, how and why. And so it is with life.
Life is, of course, a gift from God. “It is He who made us and we are His” says the Psalmist in Psalm 100. And yet, we were built not only to be but also to become . . . and we all have a certain amount of God-given days to build a life (Psalm 90:12). God helps. After all, the design was God’s in the first place – and by God’s Spirit we get inspiration, guidance and strength for the journey. God prospers for us the work of our hands (Psalm 90:17), and we work out our salvation with fear and trembling, knowing that, all along, it is God who is at work in us enabling us to will and to act (Philippians 2:12-13). Alternately, of course, we can try to build our own thing in our own way or aimlessly hope that something good will happen by doing nothing at all – like leaving the Legos in the box and just hoping they will automatically turn into a toy car. But as you see in the passage quoted above, Jesus had a different idea. He promised “full life” and offered all kinds of wisdom about how to live well in the world and then he told people to build their life on his words. He told a story about a wise and a foolish builder – one who built on a rock foundation and another who built on sand. Both houses faced the same elements – rain and wind and flood, but only one remained standing.
The discipleship opportunities you’ll find listed on our website are for people looking to build on the rock. Fear not: you do not have to be a master builder . . . that’s God job. Our task is simply to be receptive and to seek the Jesus way with faith and faithfulness. Immerse yourself in the things of God, and God will do the rest. He will build a house that cannot be shaken.
Through these opportunities, you’ll find a variety of different ways in which people are seeking to do just that, to immerse themselves in the kind of life God builds. At Christ Memorial, we are doing so by intentionally seeking to think, love, serve, and live like Jesus. Our collective hope is to be counted among the wise ones who build on the rock.
Will you join us in the journey? If you’d like help getting plugged in somewhere, please contact either our Discipleship Administrative Assistant, Lori Baker, at email@example.com / 616.796.3361 or our Connections Coordinator, Lynn White, at firstname.lastname@example.org / 616.796.3362.
We’d be thrilled to share life with you!
Rev. Ross Dieleman