Monday, December 3, 2012

Finding a foundation that works (1 Corinthians 3:14) with a story from the work of Frank Lloyd Wright.

SCRIPTURE: 1 Corinthians 3:14 (TM)
If your work passes inspection, fine … and from the NIV: No one can lay any foundation other than the one already laid, which is Jesus Christ.

The great architect Frank Lloyd Wright was given the challenge of building the Imperial Hotel in Tokyo, one of the most earthquake-prone cities in the world. Wright's investigation showed that a solid foundation could be "floated" on a sixty-foot layer of soft mud underlying the hotel, which would provide a shock-absorbing but solid support for the immense building. Shortly after the hotel was completed it withstood the worst earthquake in fifty-two years, while lesser buildings fell in ruins around it.

There are foundations and then there are foundations. We build our lives on a foundation of our own choosing. Sometimes it is financial, while at other times it is job security or family and our reputation. We pay the price and make our pick.

Over time, some foundations will prove false and everything that we have built our life on will come tumbling down. Our health will fail, our job will be lost, our relationships will no longer be as strong as they once were, and our money will only provide so much security and satisfaction.

Over time, other foundations will prove themselves well worth the effort and cost. Much like Frank Lloyd Wright’s costly, as in reputation, will be proven a correct choice. His critics thought he was crazy, but time proved him right. We can build our lives based on our own workmanship and if it passes the test, fine … but it won’t.

All we have to do is look at the ruined lives around us to begin to understand which foundations work for the long haul. We fool ourselves into thinking that this too shall last. We’ll bet the odds this time. We will be successful where everyone else has failed. We will be the only one left standing as life takes its toll on everyone around us. But, alas, the only one we fool is ourselves.

There is only one foundation that works for life, in life and throughout the full extent of life … Jesus Christ. We can, and often do, try the full smorgasbord of foundational offerings presented by the world to only discover that they are all lacking. Our life will lay in ruin if we don’t change and embrace the only one that can withstand the “earthquakes” that life will throw at us … and trust me, evidentially, there will come an “earthquake” the size and strength we could never anticipate. The emotional and personal devastation will leave our lives in ruin. Unless …

Unless we have built our lives on the only foundation that can last the “storm of the century,” the worst “earthquake” that life can throw at us … namely, the sure foundation of Jesus Christ. It will be those believers, “trusters” in Christ, that will be left standing when the dust settles.  

My hope is built on nothing less
Than Jesus’ blood and righteousness;
I dare not trust the sweetest frame,
But wholly lean on Jesus’ name
On Christ, the solid rock, I stand;
All other ground is sinking sand,
All other ground is sinking sand.

Our only hope in this difficult and challenging world is you, Jesus. Be patient with us as we “test” other ways. We’ll be back as the other offerings fail us. Bring us back to the sure foundation, the rock of our salvation. Help us to realize that Christ alone offers a place to stand. 

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