“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. The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house; yet it did not fall, because it had its foundation on the rock. But everyone who hears these words of mine and does not put them into practice is like a foolish man who built his house on sand. The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house, and it fell with a great crash.” When Jesus had finished saying these things, the crowds were amazed at his teaching, because he taught as one who had authority, and not as their teachers of the law. Matthew 7:24-29 (NIV)
That is exactly what I want. What exactly do you want? I want my life to have a firm foundation. I want to be able to withstand the storms of life that are sure to come. I don’t want to build my life on sand. I don’t want my life to fall apart when I face a storm. Those are very good desires. What must you do if you want your life to have a firm foundation? What must you do if you want your life to withstand the storms of life? I must do two things if I want a rock-solid foundation for my life that will withstand the storms, I am sure to face. I’m listening. Was that a clue? That is what I must do, I must listen to you. I must listen to your word. How will you listen to my word? I will listen attentively to your word. I will listen to your word as if my life depends on it. Why is that? My life does depend on listening to your word. Your word can and will guide the thoughts of my mind, words of my mouth, and the deeds of my life. You will guard and guide me by your word. The entire course of my life will be directed by your word. So, I don’t want to be casually listening to your word. I don’t want your word to go in one of my ears and out the other. What a tragedy that would be, for me. So, I will take your word deep into my heart and mind and life. I will allow your word to dwell in me richly. I will start my day with your word. I will end my day with your word. That will be very good.
After having clearly heard my word, what will you do with it? That is a very good question. Why is that? Hearing your word is good. Hearing your word is important. Hearing your word is my priority. But that is not nearly enough. Just as I will be listening attentively to your word, so must I also carefully put your word into practice. Only hearing your word will not give me a firm foundation or make me able to withstand the storms of life. My hearing must be coupled with my action. How so? I must do what your word says. I must receive your instruction and follow your guidance. Then, I will have a firm foundation. Then I will be able withstand the storms of life. Yes, you will.
Lord, I will listen attentively to your word. I will make hearing your word the priority of my life. I will take your word deep into my heart and mind and life. I will meditate on and memorize your word. Guide my life with your word, as I put it into practice. Amen
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