Although we are practicing social distancing, the Gospel message remains unchained! This devotional is best with some time (20-30min), coffee/tea, and a notebook. Enjoy!
Building on the Rock
By: Dennis & Marquette Wilson
24 “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. 25 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. 26 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. 27 The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house, and it fell with a great crash.”
28 When Jesus had finished saying these things, the crowds were amazed at his teaching,
Thinking about personal development can be challenging. To help you get started, take some time to reflect upon and answer the questions below. Once you’ve done so, you should be able to identify a few areas that you’d like to focus on, improve, or learn more about, all of which will help you to grow.
Q: Storms can cause fear and anxiety, are any “storms of life” hitting you right now?
Q: What is the promise Jesus makes us when we decide to build on the rock (obeying his word)?
Step 1: Survey the Ground
Look at the condition of the soil, is it strong enough?
5 “A farmer went out to sow his seed. As he was scattering the seed, some fell along the path; it was trampled on, and the birds ate it up. 6 Some fell on rocky ground, and when it came up, the plants withered because they had no moisture. 7 Other seed fell among thorns, which grew up with it and choked the plants. 8 Still other seed fell on good soil. It came up and yielded a crop, a hundred times more than was sown.”
When he said this, he called out, “Whoever has ears to hear, let them hear.”
We are reminded that the parable of the sower has relevance throughout our journey as disciples; strong soil supports a solid foundation from which we can grow and build.
Q: What is the condition of my heart, am I receptive to God’s word that instructs, disciplines, and trains me on how to live a holy life?
Q: What are some character strengths you have that provide a great foundation to build on? (If your naturally hard on yourself, ask a friend)
Step 2: Excavate
We have to clear the land we are building on.
Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, 2 fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith. For the joy set before him he endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. 3 Consider him who endured such opposition from sinners, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart.
There are things that can really hinder our ability to grow in our faith when we encounter these hindrances it is important to “throw them off”
Challenge: What “entanglement”, or “hinderance” will you decide to attack starting now?
Pick one: a sin, a fear, or a distraction.
Q: How does fixing our eyes on Jesus perfect our faith?
Meditate on the following passage, it will be worth it!
3 Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! In his great mercy he has given us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, 4 and into an inheritance that can never perish, spoil or fade. This inheritance is kept in heaven for you, 5 who through faith are shielded by God’s power until the coming of the salvation that is ready to be revealed in the last time. 6 In all this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while you may have had to suffer grief in all kinds of trials. 7 These have come so that the proven genuineness of your faith—of greater worth than gold, which perishes even though refined by fire—may result in praise, glory and honor when Jesus Christ is revealed. 8 Though you have not seen him, you love him; and even though you do not see him now, you believe in him and are filled with an inexpressible and glorious joy, 9 for you are receiving the end result of your faith, the salvation of your souls.
1 Peter 1:3-9
Remembering that God is in control and that he uses the various situations that we encounter to ensure that we can stand strong (faithful), and mature. Our hope extends beyond 2020 – it’s a hope to live with God for eternity. To achieve the goal of heaven, we will all experience obstacles and trials along the way,
but we cannot allow those obstacles to dampen our faith or hold us back. When we persevere God promises a chance for spiritual growth, fully developed endurance, righteousness and maturity (James 1:1-2)
Step 3: Dig Deep – Build High
Q: How deep are you willing to dig? Are you willing to take your spiritual walk to a new depth so you can go even higher?
The deepest foundations can sustain great heights – the deeper we dig, the taller we can build – II Peter 1:3-8
When we deepen our prayers, our Father in heaven hears them and he answers. When we deepen our love, it enlarges our hearts to express empathy, compassion, and understanding towards others. When we deepen our devotion to the word God shows us how to build a life that will last an eternity.
Q: Where can you go deeper? pick one: Prayer, Love, Devotion to The Word.
Practical: Call someone today to pray with. Pray through everything you are feeling. The ways you want God to transform you, to help you deepen, and for his help as you build your amazing life on the Rock!
You got this!