Is Your Foundation Still Solid?
by Joshua Travers - April 5, 2022
Your foundation shapes who you are. How much have you been paying attention to it?
Who are you?
That is one of the big questions you have to try to figure out as a teenager. As we become more of our own person, we are confronted by questions about what we believe, what we think, why we believe and think that way, and what we’re going to be doing about it. That is to say nothing of the other things we have to sort out, like drama, academics and the anxieties of high school and/or college.
No doubt there’s a lot of pressure and responsibility involved with being a teenager.
Christ’s words of wisdom
Christ compared the way we build our lives to the concept of building a house.
In His famous Sermon on the Mount, Jesus gave His followers many practical points on how we should live the Christian life. Concluding the sermon, He said, “Therefore whoever hears these sayings of Mine, and does them, I will liken him to a wise man who built his house on the rock: and the rain descended, the floods came, and the winds blew and beat on that house; and it did not fall, for it was founded on the rock” (Matthew 7:24-25).
What we build our lives on matters, and how we build our lives also matters. Especially in this day and age where identity confusion abounds, we should remember that what we build our identity on matters too.
Life is full of twists and turns, shocks and surprises, and joys and hardships. If we want to stand firm through all of those, we need the right foundation—one that is solid and immovable. And, as Christ said, the foundation that we need is the Rock—Jesus Christ Himself.
Adding to the foundation
Most of you reading this post have grown up in the Church. You’ve grown up hearing your friends’ and relatives’ stories about how they stood up for the truth and made sacrifices even when it wasn’t easy. Now, it’s becoming your turn.
Is your foundation ready?
Our foundation must be the teachings of Jesus Christ and His Word. Any other foundation is too weak to be able to provide the stability we need. But we can’t just have the right foundation and do nothing with it. Eventually, we are going to have to build on that foundation.
Everything that we add to that foundation—relationships, careers, goals—must be in agreement with the foundation. If our foundation is Jesus Christ, but our lifestyle is in complete disagreement with His Word and teachings, then our lives will eventually crumble and fall apart. Our actions, words and beliefs must be in alignment with the foundation.
But, even then, the work isn’t done.
Rechecking the foundation
We can’t just build our foundation and then forget it exists. We must routinely check our foundation to ensure it is still strong and stable.
There are a number of things that can work to erode our foundation. Just a little crack overlooked or ignored can eventually do some serious damage. One of the greatest dangers, however, is seeing the crack and ignoring it, convincing ourselves that it doesn’t really pose much of a problem and doesn’t need to be taken care of now. This can be likened to people in their teen years who mistakenly believe they have all the time in the world to set things right.
The truth is, we don’t. The time is always now to examine our foundation for problems and then reinforce it. We can fail to take notice of the seemingly negligible crack—but damage can take place under the surface, and the small crack can lead to a massive chasm later.
Something else that can weaken our foundation is bitterness. Let’s face it, life can be hard. We see things that we miss out on. People hurt us, sometimes maliciously. We go through trials that we think make no sense. But we can’t let these things weaken our foundation.
The author of Hebrews identifies bitterness as a root (Hebrews 12:15), something that grows under the surface and shoves its way through whatever gets in its way. Bitterness can start very small, but can escalate to the point that it weakens the entire foundation and the building on top of it.
Examining your foundation
The apostle Paul says to examine “whether you are in the faith. Test yourselves” (2 Corinthians 13:5). We must take the time and make the effort to look at and examine our foundation. That might sometimes involve going back to the basics we were taught growing up, so that we can remind ourselves what we believe and why we believe it.
The teenage years are an exciting and pivotal time in one’s life. What foundation will you build? And just as importantly, will you make sure that your foundation stands?