Build yourself wisely

What did Jesus mean when He said 24 “Therefore everyone who hears these words of Mine and acts on them, may be compared to a wise man who built his house on the rock. 25 And the rain fell, and the floods came, and the winds blew and slammed against that house; and yet it did not fall, for it had been founded on the rock (Matthew Ch 7)? This was the closing of the teaching that He began in Matthew Ch 5.

What is the solid foundation that keeps the house (man) from falling? Is it a big bank account, or 401k? Is it family? Is it spending every spare minute at the church? What is it? I believe that the Bible answers itself, and that the Holy Spirit leads us in understanding. I am going to present a quick summary of these 3 chapters of teaching by Jesus in short statements. (These are not direct quotes from scripture, I am summarizing in my own words)

You are blessed if you are humble, if you hunger and thirst for righteousness, if you are merciful and pure in heart, and if you are a peacemaker. You are blessed if people insult, and lie about you. Be blessed. You are the light of the world if you let these things shine before men.

Don’t be angry with your brother, and make friends with your opponent. Don’t operate in sin. Go the extra mile. Love your enemy.

Give to the poor, and fast without making it a spectacle. Spend time alone with God in prayer. Be forgiving.

Treasure in heaven is better than treasure on earth. Your heart is attracted to treasure, so be careful how you define it. You can not serve God and money.

Don’t worry about life, have faith that father God has you covered. Seek first His kingdom, and He will take care of the rest.

Don’t judge people. I would say discern and make decisions; however, Jesus clearly says not to judge.

Keep asking, seeking, and knocking. Consistently and continuously.

Treat people like you want to be treated.

Be an outlier in the world. Don’t follow the crowds through the wide gate. The narrow way leads to life.

Learn to recognize good fruit. Just because it looks good does not mean that it is good. There are ravenous wolves in sheep clothing. Just because they look the part does not always mean they are walking in the kingdom.

Then we come back to the hinge statement. Therefore.

Therefore, everyone who hears these things and does them is like a house built on the rock, the solid foundation. If you hear these things, and do these things you will not fall. Even when the storms come.

What does this mean for our lives? I will say this, storms of all types without question will come. Failures, enemies, lies, insults, relational struggles, the allure of money, pride, ego, relational struggles, wolves that look like sheep, and so on. However, the storms will not cause you to fall if you have heard the words of Jesus and put them into practice.

Build yourself wisely.

God is for you, and I am for you!

 

What would you say?

What would you say to yourself if you walked in a room, and had the chance to have a serious sit down meeting with yourself at 18? I was recently challenged by this question while listening to a podcast.

I try to keep my posts to 750 words, or less so that they are a quick read. Sometimes it leaves me feeling like they are incomplete; however, I know that I would feel that way if I wrote 2,000+ words. Needless to say with this topic it would take a lot of words to be complete; however, I will try to keep it short.

Honestly the first thing I would tell myself is that it will take us months worth of meetings to get everything straightened out. It’s kind of funny, but true. When I thought deeply about this, and went through some serious self-reflection, I came up with two primary subjects I would talk about. You only have one meeting so you have to make it count.

Subject 1. Don’t let other people shape your understanding of who God is, get to know Him deeply for yourself. Listen, and learn from people; however, seek Him first. This will save you a lot of struggle in the near future, and a lot of time spent unlearning things in your life. In knowing Him deeply you will find that you come to know yourself as well. After all, He designed you to be who you are on purpose, and for purpose. Don’t let other people shape the vision you have for your life. If you do you will spend a lot of time fulfilling other people’s expectations, and never walking in fulfillment of your own vision and expectations. Celebrate other people’s vision, help other people with their vision, but know that it’s ok to blaze the trail towards the God-given vision that burns in your heart. Seek first the Kingdom in your decisions, not what other people will think or say. The people who matter will celebrate you.

Subject 2. You are very driven, and a very hard worker. You get that from your closest family, as it is a core value. It is a very good characteristic to have; however, it will not be enough on its own. You will have to couple some things to your drive, and hard work. Things like patience, persistence, and wisdom. The wisdom you will need will come from God, and Godly people. The wisdom of the world looks good, but looks can be deceiving. Godly wisdom will show you that good credit is simply your relationship with debt, the wisdom of the world will tell you establishing good credit (meaning putting yourself in debt) is one of the most important things you can do. The wisdom of the economic machine in America will tell you there is good debt, bad debt, and you can leverage debt to become wealthy. Godly wisdom will tell you to owe no one anything except to love them, and to multiply what you have. Remember looks can be deceiving, it can look like you have many assets, but let’s be really honest, if that asset carries debt with anyone it’s not really your asset anyway. This can lead to many troubles. These are just examples, and it’s ok for you to have this conviction even if it isn’t popular. It is also ok for you to support others that don’t carry your same convictions, whether it is this example or others. I will tell you that I’ve just stumbled onto an equation that you can use now, and in your future. I have never heard it exactly like this before. Drive and hard work + patience + persistance = wisdom = growth. Walk toward your vision, be patient and persist in the harder times, and you will gain wisdom as well as grow as a son of God. Of course it’s not a bad thing to learn from the wisdom gained by other people around you. Take this useful knowledge, and apply it to your life, it’s easier. However, you will find that applying this knowledge does not equate to the same growth in your life as earning wisdom through the before mentioned equation. It is harder, but it’s still worth it.

Bonus: Seek to be the most impressive to your wife, daughter, and family. They matter the most.

If you take this advice you will get where you want to be a lot faster, and a lot easier. If you don’t you will try a lot of things, and get caught up in other people’s ideas, but you will learn, grow, and be ok. Know your Father, and become who He created you to be.

There is so much more to be said within these two subjects, but I will bring this post to an end.

I am happy to have been able to share a piece of my heart with you. Leave a comment, tell me your thoughts, or share your heart. I challenge you to look at your 18-year-old self, and reflect. I would love to hear from you.

Live your life Kingdom first!

Levi