Build life on solid ground

Published 12:00 am Saturday, February 14, 2009

Last summer, my wife and I were privileged to visit Italy. Our cruise ship docked for one day near the town of Pisa. You’ve heard of the Leaning Tower of Pisa. Built 812 years ago, the 179-foot tower moves about one-20th of an inch a year, and is now 17 feet out of plumb. Its foundation is only 10 feet deep! Authorities say that soon the tower will lean too far and will collapse.

Most skyscrapers today are built with very deep foundations. The Sears Tower is the tallest occupied building in the United States reaching 110 stories into the Chicago skyline. Beneath the street, the foundation is 10 stories deep.

Jesus told the story about a wise man who built his house upon a rock foundation. When the storm came, the house stood firm. A foolish man built his house on sand. When the storm came, the house fell with a loud crash (Matthew 7:24-27). This story illustrates that what we build on is very important. It also illustrates that you can’t tell what’s inside by looking at the outside. It wasn’t until the winds blew against both houses that their foundations were revealed.

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Life is full of adversity. Storms assail us from every direction. Financial troubles, stressful work conditions, health issues, struggling relationships, personal hang-ups — all take their toll on our lives. One friend told me recently after a particularly hard week, “I take one step forward and get knocked two steps backward!” News anchor David Brinkley once said, “A successful man is one who can lay a firm foundation with the bricks others have thrown at him.”

If you and I are going to build anything better than a chicken coup of our lives, we are going to have to build deep foundations.

There has to be solid rock below if we’re to reach high above. We can survive outer turmoil if we have inner strength. Zig Ziglar writes, “The foundation stones for a balanced success are honesty, character, integrity, faith, love and loyalty.”

The foundation that you can trust to withstand any storm is the eternal rock, Jesus. Whatever is built on Him will last.

Del Loy is pastor of Crosspoint Church in Natchez.