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Hearing and Acting

Posted by on May 26, 2017

The strongest foundations are built on rock.

I recently came across a passage in Matthew 7:24-27. It’s often called, “The Wise and Foolish Builders.” It’s a familiar story for me, one I learned in Sunday school as a child. I think there may even have been visual aids.

Jesus tells the story of a wise man and a foolish man. He says that people who hear His words and put them into practice are like a wise man who built his house on a rock. When the rain came and the streams rose and the wind blew, his house did not fall because its foundation was on the rock.

Then, He says that people who hear His words and do not put them into practice, are like the foolish man who built his house on the sand. The rains came; the streams rose; and the winds blew and beat against that house and it fell with a great crash.

But, as a child, I couldn’t fully appreciate the importance of foundations. Sand and rocks were things I played with, not things I would build on.

Fast forward and I know all about sandy ground and sink holes and what happens when houses aren’t built on sturdy ground.

I’m also much more aware of Jesus’ wording here. It’s not enough to hear His words. In other words, sitting in church once a week, or tuning into a television sermon and simply listening, doesn’t fit the bill. He says to be like the wise man, we must first hear his words and then put them into practice. Hearing is not enough.

Our faith is not passive. It also requires some doing. That doesn’t mean we have to go on mission trips in far off lands. That doesn’t mean we have to become pastors. It means we have to do things like love God and love each other. It means we have to care about the widows and the orphans, and all of those who are less fortunate.

These are the actions that grow our faith and we need our faith to be strong because in both instances, Jesus said the rain and the wind came.

Storms come at us on this side of eternity whether we are faithful or not, but those who are wise and listen to Jesus’ words and put them into practice, are able to stand, for their foundation is built on the rock. That beats the alternative any day.

A story of sand and rock reminded me. Perhaps you needed reminding too.

Have an awesome day!

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