When significant cracks begin to show up on the walls of a house, it is a symptom of foundation problems. There are two options homeowners have:
- Patch and paint over the wall so people don’t notice.
- Spend time and money repairing the foundation.
The first option is certainly the easiest (and most tempting). It fails, however, to stop the cracks from coming back. The truest solution requires pouring a sound foundation.
Like a house, your heart shows cracks as well. “Why is ______________ consistently a problem in my life?” you may ask. Perhaps it is because you have slapped on a patch rather than addressed the foundation.
It’s easier to convince ourselves that heart issues are due to busy schedules or anxious seasons of life. We attempt to paint over it with time-management strategies or simply wait for the season to change when, in reality, the foundation is off. Read the words of Jesus,
Everyone then who hears these words of mine and does them will be like a wise man who built his house on the rock. And the rain fell, and the floods came, and the winds blew and beat on that house, but it did not fall, because it had been founded on the rock.
And everyone who hears these words of mine and does not do them will be like a foolish man who built his house on the sand. And the rain fell, and the floods came, and the winds blew and beat against that house, and it fell, and great was the fall of it.
If our life is built on sand, when the storms get strong enough, the walls will crash down around us. It’s better to stop and take a quick look at our house before that time comes.
Do an Inspection
The following short exercise will help you look closer at life’s foundation. Take your time answering the following:
(Pick which choice best describes you)
As I do this exercise, my mind is focused on…
- Being courageously honest no matter what it reveals about my life.
- What someone will think if they knew my answers.
What brings me a greater sense of self-worth?
- Being loved by God.
- Being known as an expert at what I do.
When it comes to rest,
- I find that disconnecting from weekly pressures and expectations comes easily.
- I find it nearly impossible to not think about work or to-do lists all the time.
When someone is better than me at something,
- I can celebrate them.
- I feel threatened or insecure.
I feel like my daily choices are motivated by…
- Power, love and self-control.
- Fear and selfishness.
When I read Scripture,
- I am refreshed and inspired.
- I feel like more things get added to my spiritual “to-do” list.
I obey God…
- Because I love Him.
- So He won’t hurt or punish me.
Admit Your Need
Perhaps you are beginning to see places in your heart that need repair. So, how do we move from Answer Two to Answer One? And how can we guard ourselves from going back? There’s hope that your life can be built on the sustaining work of Jesus Christ. For today, as a next step, simply admit in prayer that you need help,
There are places in my life that need to be reshaped by the work of Your Spirit. I am enslaved to things in ways You never intended. Would You help me experience freedom more fully? In Jesus’ name, Amen.
Repentance Brings Freedom
Many times, our areas of weakness stem from lack of faith. Repentance is a dual-motion activity: turn away from sin and towards Christ. The example of the father in Mark 9:24 serves us well. In a moment of doubt, he turned toward Jesus and said, “I believe; help my unbelief!”
Turn to the Lord right now and ask Him to fill you with faith in the truths of His Word (even in the midst of doubts or uncertainty). Don’t patch it. Build your house on something better.