“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.” Vss. 24 – 27 ESV
Jesus uses a common sense example – something many in his audience would have known about. When you build a house, build it on a good foundation and it will last a long time, especially when storms come and batter it, it will still stand. Jesus uses this illustration at the end of what we call the Sermon on the Mount to emphasize the importance of not just listening to what he has to say and moving on with life, but of taking it seriously and putting it into practice.
What do we do with the things we read in God’s Word or hear on Sunday morning or in our Community Groups? Hopefully they’re not just so much noise that gets forgotten quickly. That’s why it’s important to engage when we read the Bible or when we’re in a learning environment. But while paying attention and learning are the first step, they’re not the last. We need to follow Jesus’ instruction and do what we learn as well. Putting those words into practice is a lifelong activity that causes us to grow as disciples and gives us the foundation for a fruitful spiritual life.
God, may we not just let your words go in one ear and out the other. May we pay attention and learn what you have to say to us, then incorporate it into our lives and put it into practice in our daily living.