“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.” (Matthew 7:24 NIV)
The foundation of a house tells you how big the house can get. You can’t put a big house on a small or faulty foundation. It’ll collapse every time.
The same is true for our lives. You can’t become what God wants you to be on a faulty foundation. We’re given a lot of different options for what will be the foundation of our lives:
- Popular culture. Some people think they’ll simply do what every other person is doing. If it’s popular, that’s what they do, too. Yet what’s popular today won’t be popular tomorrow. Basing your life on popular culture is like building a house on a constantly moving foundation. It doesn’t work!
- Tradition. Other people build their lives on what has always been done — or how their parents did it. That does make a little sense. Tradition becomes tradition because it works. But no tradition lasts forever. It eventually wears out, becomes obsolete, and is invalid. In Mark 7:8 Jesus tells the Pharisees never to put tradition before truth. It’s a good reminder for all of us.
- Reason. God gave us the ability to reason; we need to use it. But our reason isn’t infallible. Proverbs 16:25 says, “There is a way that appears to be right, but in the end it leads to death” (NIV). The reason is the smartest among us will falter at times. It’s to be expected. Only God can be trusted all the time.
- Emotions. Some build their lives on a feeling. If it feels right, they do it. But feelings lie — they lie all the time. You lie to yourself more than anyone else. If you live by your feelings, you’ll spend your life manipulated by your moods.
If it doesn’t work to build your life on popular culture, tradition, reason, or emotion, what should we build our lives upon? God’s Word.
Jesus says this in Matthew 7:24: “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.”
If you build your life on the rock of God’s Word, truth never changes. Popular culture changes, traditions grow stale, reason can be faulty, and emotions lie.
Yet God’s Word never changes.
You may not always understand his Word. You may not always like it. It won’t always be politically correct.
But it’s the only thing stable enough to build our lives upon.
Talk About It
- On what have you built the foundation of your life? How is it holding up?
- What distractions in your life keep you from fully building your foundation on the Bible?
Rick Warren on Muslims, Evangelism, and Missions
Pastor Rick often says, “You never win your enemies to Christ, only your friends.” He's gone past the limits some believers are willing to broach in order to form friendships and love a world in need of Jesus. Because this part of Pastor Rick’s ministry is sometimes misunderstood, we offer this interview where he clearly explains his beliefs and the biblical foundation for reaching out to those who do not believe in Christ, even if it means going places where the Gospel is never preached.
Rick Warren is the founding pastor of Saddleback Church in Lake Forest, Calif., one of America's largest and most influential churches. Rick is author of the New York Times bestseller The Purpose Driven Life. His book, The Purpose Driven Church, was named one of the 100 Christian books that changed the 20th century. He is also founder of Pastors.com, a global Internet community for pastors.
This devotional © 2012 by Rick Warren. All rights reserved. Used by permission.