‘God my rock’ (Brenton Brown – God My Rock – God My Rock #3)
When you were young and you went on holiday, if you were lucky enough to go, did you play on the beach and build large, rambling, majestic sand castles?
Then later on in the day, did you watch as the tide returned, and relentlessly came in a destroyed you creation; hours of sweating and toiling gone with just a few small waves, as it washed away your masterpiece.
I used to try to stop this, I would collect stones and try to build a dam, or I would dig a trench around it like a moat on a castle, but eventually, the result was the same, annihilation for the creation I had worked so hard at.
That is why Jesus said;
‘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’ (Matthew 7:26 NIV).
As a builder, with many years experience, I could explain, and probably bore you to death in the process, all of the ins and outs of building something correctly, with a properly dug, deep enough, sure foundation with which to start, but I will not (yay!).
If you build wisely from a firm solid foundation, or if you listen to the word of God, and then practice it, i.e. walk it out in your day to day life for all to see, then you are like;
‘a wise man who built his house on the rock’ (Matthew 7:24 ESV).
The very nature of rock is solidity and strength.
If we plan something properly, then what we are planning will generally have a good foundation, a good start to the venture, and a chance that it may succeed. It certainly has a better chance that if we do no absolutely no planning whatsoever, and just ‘wing-it’.
Our Christian faith is a little like that. If we hear the word of God, listen to it properly, then ignore it until we decide to go to church the following week, or whenever we attend, the our faith is a little like the house on the sand, we will have no depth to our foundational knowledge about the gospel and Jesus, who gave so much for us.
People may ask us questions about Jesus, expecting a reply that may challenge them, or help them enter into a debate about your faith and their lack. But if there is no depth to our knowledge, then we may only be able to give a shallow answer that may not really give the person asking any information.
If we attend church, whatever denomination we go to does not really matter; what matters is that we are engaging with God and other Christians, and being present, ready to listen to the word of God, and hopefully hear God speak to us through the service, i.e. through the worship, prayers or message preached.
If we attend and listen, engage with others and God, and really ask him to speak to us, then, like a good cheese, we will mature.
We do not need to be advanced in years to be mature; I have heard relatively young people be very articulate and knowledgeable about the Bible and theology, and really engage the people that they are speaking to, pulling them into what they are talking about; pulling them in because they are so passionate about their topic, Jesus.
We also read that Jesus was so;
‘because he taught as one who had authority’ (Matthew 7:29 NIV).
‘And they were astonished at his teaching, for he taught them as one who had authority’ (Mark 1:22 ESV – emphasis mine).
‘For with authority and power he commands’ (Luke 4:36 ESV).
‘No one ever spoke the way this man does’ (John 7:46 NIV).
In our country, the law of the land has authority over all situations, and, if you break the law by stealing something, or by breaking-in to somewhere, or by murdering or trying to murder someone, or cause someone bodily harm etc. then the law will deal with you.
‘the law has authority’ (Romans 7:1 NIV).
But where does the authority of the law come from?
‘there is no authority except from God, and those that exist have been instituted by God’ (Romans 13:1 ESV).
God does not let our life randomly proceed; he has a plan for all of our lives (Jeremiah 29:11). We may think that we get our job and subsequently the promotion with more pay and better terms, all from what we have done, but we should be careful in how we treat others. We may have had bad bosses in the past, but two wrongs do not make a right (this is life, not Algebra).
‘I may not have to be harsh in my use of authority, the authority the Lord gave me’ (2 Corinthians 13:10 NIV).
We need to live our life, so that when people look at us, they notice that we are generally different from the people around us. We should be different, and we are called to be different.
‘Do not be conformed to this world’ (Romans 12:1 ESV).
We should stand out from the crowd. We need to be the light in the dark place, just as Jesus said;
‘You are the light of the world’ (Matthew 5:14 NIV).
And if we are to be the light, what do we do with our light, keep it to ourselves? Only share it with our friends? No, we put it where everyone can see it;
‘No one lights a lamp and puts it in a place where it will be hidden… … put it on its stand, so that those who come in may see the light’ (Luke 11:33 NIV).
We need to be able to show others who may not know Jesus, the way to Jesus. We know that he is the way to our Father God (John 14:6), but many in the world do not, and there are even many who have never even had a chance to hear about the amazing saving grace of Jesus and the gospel.
In the film Stardust (Paramount Pictures – 2007), a star (Yvaine played by Claire Danes) falls to earth and a love story ensues, but, ultimately just before the end of the film she recovers from a broken heart and says to her beloved (Tristan played by Chalie Cox);
‘What do stars do? They shine’ (Yvaine – Stardust – 2007).
So what should we do, for the world that is lacking Jesus, for the world that may not ever have heard the amazing gospel message? For the person we work with who does not know Jesus? For our neighbour? For our family members?
What we should do, is shine for Jesus!
There’s a little flame inside us all
Some shine bright, some shine small
The rains will come and the waters rise
But don’t you ever lose your light
In this life you will know
Love and pain, joy and sorrow
So when it hurts, when times get hard
Don’t forget whose child you are
This little light of mine
I’m gonna let it shine
This little light of mine
I’m gonna let it shine, gonna let it shine
May you live each day with no regret
Make the most of every chance you get
Let your eyes get wide when you look at the stars
With the same sense of wonder as a child’s heart
With the ones you love treasure the time
And for those who are gone keep their memories alive
Hold on to your dreams don’t ever let go
There’s a fire inside you burning with hope
There will be days when you want to give up
When the clouds settle in
But after the rain comes the sun
Don’t you ever forget
One day there will be no more pain
And we will finally see Jesus’ face
So until then I’m gonna try
To brave the dark and let my little light shine
This Little Light Of Mine (Addison Road – Stories #3)
Ryan Gregg & Jennie Stiefel
Father we thank you sending Jesus to light the way for us, and to show us the way to enter into your kingdom. Help us be the light that is needed in this world that can be so dark. Lord this world needs you, we need you, help us to shine for you and guide others into your presence.