On our walk to school every day, we pass by several houses that are being built. My girls love it when they get to see the concrete truck pouring the foundation. In our area of the country, nearly all homes are built on a concrete foundation. It provides a sturdy foundation for the house that will keep it from leaning or falling down.
We live in tornado country. When a tornado strikes, often the only thing left standing is the foundation. When the sirens go off, we all hurry to our basements to take refuge because it is the safest place to be.
Our lives are a lot like those houses being built down the street. If we don't have a sturdy foundation, our lives will collapse. Jesus is that foundation. When we base our lives on Jesus, we not only create the foundation for a stable life, but also have a place of refuge. We can weather the storms of life because Jesus is holding us up.
Jesus explained it like this:
“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.” (Matthew 7:24-27)
We don't want our lives to fall with a great crash. We want to build our lives firmly on Jesus, follow His commands, draw from His love and strength and take refuge in Him.
The Bible calls Jesus the cornerstone. The cornerstone was the most important stone in a building. If it was crooked or out of line, the whole building would be unstable. 1 Peter 2:6 says "See, I lay a stone in Zion, a chosen and precious cornerstone, and the one who trusts in him will never be put to shame."
When we make Jesus the cornerstone of our lives, we assure ourselves of building a life that won't lean or collapse. When we trust Jesus to lead us, we know that He will never lead us astray.
The earlier we start building our lives on the firm foundation of Jesus, the easier it is to build a life that won't sway or turn away. We need to impress upon our kids the importance of basing their lives on Jesus.
Illustrate this idea for your kids:
- Grab a set of blocks (if you have the game Jenga, it works great for this). Build a tower of blocks at least two blocks wide. Make it as tall as you can without it becoming unstable. Explain to your kids the importance of a firm foundation. Point out the blocks that are serving as the foundation. Then, ask your kids what they think will happen if you pull the bottom block out of the tower. Let them pull the bottom block out and watch the tower come tumbling down. Explain that when we choose not to follow Jesus, our life is like that tower of blocks without a foundation, unstable and likely to end up a mess.
- Make a pile of sand and a pile of rocks. Pour some water over the piles. Ask your kids which pile stood up better to the water. Talk about how the water is like the tough things that happen in life -- mean kids, tough choices. When we choose not to follow Jesus, we're like the sand, easily moved. When we do follow Jesus, we're like the rocks, firmly planted. We want to not be easily swayed by what other people think or do. We want to be like the rocks when tough stuff happens, knowing that Jesus is in charge.
A firm foundation is crucial to building a house, and it's also crucial to building a life. Place your trust in Jesus and let Him be the firm foundation on which you build your life.