47 Whosoever cometh to me, and heareth my sayings, and doeth them, I will shew you to whom he is like:48 He is like a man which built an house, and digged deep, and laid the foundation on a rock: and when the flood arose, the stream beat vehemently upon that house, and could not shake it: for it was founded upon a rock.49 But he that heareth, and doeth not, is like a man that without a foundation built an house upon the earth; against which the stream did beat vehemently, and immediately it fell; and the ruin of that house was great. ((Luke 6:47-49 KJV))
I have a confession to make. I occasionally suffer from astraphobia or for those who speak English that means fear of thunderstorms. This fear goes back to my early childhood. I know God does not desire this (2 Timothy 1:7), but in my humanity this is something with which I struggle. I must admit God has helped me tremendously with this phobia.
I remember the fear and dread that would swell in my young heart when I would see a storm gathering on the horizon; its angry clouds swirling with threatening streaks of lightning. As I write this, I can still recall the paralyzing fear that would grip me. The pounding of thunder and the howl of the wind would send shivers up my spine. I remember retreating into the safety of my mothers arms. I wanted to avoid the storms all together but I had to ride them out.
As I have matured, I have often thought of these perilous time I have faced and the Lord has seen me through every one. I do not get afraid as much about thunderstorms as I used too, but I still have to face storms of a different sort. We all face them. Pain, heartache, financial hardships, sickness, and death to name a few. I have seen people go through storms which I thought would destroy their faith but they remained after all had passed over. Then I have seen those that have an appearance of sturdiness topple because they neglected spiritual truths in God’s Word.
In today’s reading, we see a comparison of two types of people. We have a comparison of a person who hears and obeys Jesus teachings and one who hears and disobeys. Jesus likens them to two men building houses. I would like to point out there similarities first, both heard the word, both built houses, and both faced storms. (It doesn’t matter who you are the trials of life do not discriminate.)The two homes were probably built from the same types of material. They both probably looked very impressive to the average eye, but the ground work made the difference in the end. Only the house with foundations upon the rock stood tall after the storm winds had ceased.
Upon closer inspection the wise builder (the hearer and doer of the word) dug deep into the claims of Christ. He let the Word of God seep deep within the crevices of his heart. He hid God’s Word in his heart and it came out in his walk! In Psalm 119, David said, “Thy word have I hid in mine heart, that I might not sin against thee.” Our body makes no action that does not begin with a thought in our mind. This is why we are to renew our minds with the word of God (Romans 12:1,2). This builder talked the talk and walked the walk!
He not only “dug deep” but he also laid a foundation upon solid rock. Our foundation is Jesus Christ (1 Corinthian 3:11)! He knew that all that surrounded the home would possibly wash away, except the rock. When he faced a great storm it was the rock which kept the house from being shaken! Our relationship with Jesus does not make us exempt from the storms of life. We all have to run against the wind in life, but God’s Word will not ever fail us!
Jesus not only speaks peace but he is our peace(Ephesians 2:14)! He is the Prince of Peace (Isaiah 9:6). In John 16:33, He said “These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.” Jesus desires us to have peace amidst the tempests of trials. He has not given us the spirit of fear (2Timothy 1:7).
Sometimes Jesus takes us into storms of testing. The following is a story of where Jesus led his disciples into a storm:
And the same day, when the even was come, he saith unto them, Let us pass over unto the other side. And when they had sent away the multitude, they took him even as he was in the ship. And there were also with him other little ships. And there arose a great storm of wind, and the waves beat into the ship, so that it was now full. And he was in the hinder part of the ship, asleep on a pillow: and they awake him, and say unto him, Master, carest thou not that we perish? And he arose, and rebuked the wind, and said unto the sea, Peace, be still. And the wind ceased, and there was a great calm. And he said unto them, Why are ye so fearful? how is it that ye have no faith? And they feared exceedingly, and said one to another, What manner of man is this, that even the wind and the sea obey him?
(Mark 4:35-41 KJV)
Jesus had told the disciples they would reach the other side before the journey had begun. Even though it may appear that Jesus does not care about your storm, he is still in the boat with you! The passage says he was in the “hinder part of the ship”, that is where the captain steers the vessel. You can rest assured in your storms the Captain is still steering your ship! It may not seem like it at the moment, but God is still in control! He lets us experience storms, often to show His mighty power! If it had not been for the Lord where would we be?
This same storm happened right before they reached the country of the Gadarenes. If you remember this is where “Legion” was cast out of a man into the swine. Could it be that the storm was trying to hinder this marvelous deliverance? I believe so. Many of the storms come right before a major victory, so don’t give up. Dig deep!
The unwise builder (hearer but not a doer) faced a storm of the same magnitude as the wise builder but his house collapsed. His life was built on the shifting sand of the world. He had not heeded Christ’s message, “Heaven and earth shall pass away, but my words shall not pass away.” The ruin was a terrific loss of everything he held dear. I am sure he had little comfort or peace, while the other builder was not even shaken.
Do you have peace or remain unshaken when life throws you a curve? Or do you crumble? Could it be that you have refrained from “digging deep” into God’s promises? This is not to merely hearing a sermon a week or simply reading your Bible. This is, so to speak, walking the scriptures out in your daily life. Living what you believe. Being a doer and not just a hearer. What does the Bible say about this?
But be ye doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving your own selves. For if any be a hearer of the word, and not a doer, he is like unto a man beholding his natural face in a glass: For he beholdeth himself, and goeth his way, and straightway forgetteth what manner of man he was. But whoso looketh into the perfect law of liberty, and continueth therein, he being not a forgetful hearer, but a doer of the work, this man shall be blessed in his deed.
(James 1:22-25 KJV)
We must not think that the Christian life is all fun and games. We will face storms and trials. We must do as the wise builder and dig deep and lay a foundation. It is up to us to obey or disobey. Have you dug deep and laid claim to your piece of the rock? If so, then you will have the Peace of the Rock amidst life’s storms.