Read this devotional message and then challenge yourself to follow what it’s asking you to do:
Matthew 7:24-27 (NIV)
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. 25The 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. 26But 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. 27The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house, and it fell with a great crash.”
Insights: Jesus Christ is the one making this statement. He presents a truth; an insight into an element of belief that is overlooked many times by believers or not fully understood.
That element is “acting on what you believe”.
People make decisions every day in accordance with what they believe, and what they believe is a result of their own processes of acceptance or rejection of presented facts. A person will assume a posture of a belief that will reflect their understanding of those presented facts as being either true or false.
What is significant for us to note is what does the person do with their beliefs? They can either act on them or not. Just because someone has a belief in something does not mean they will act on that belief. When they “act on” their belief it is because they put their trust and reliance on it. When they “do not act on” their belief it is because their trust and reliance are lacking.
We are told in the Gospel of John 1:14 (NIV) that Jesus is the Word who became flesh and dwelt among us. We are also told in Psalm 119:160 (NIV) that all of God’s words are true and eternal.
Therefore, in verse 24 of our devotional scripture passage, Jesus is speaking about those persons whom He calls wise, who hear His words of truth and accept them as truth and act on them out of trust and reliance.
In verse 26 of our devotional scripture passage, Jesus is speaking about those persons whom He calls foolish, who hear His words of truth and accept them as truth but do not act on them because of a lack of trust and reliance.
Jesus is giving us insight into the dynamics of what our faith should be. The truths of God’s words are what we are to trust and rely on. If we do what He tells us to do – we are demonstrating the trust we have in Him. If we do not do what He tells us to do – we are demonstrating a lack of trust in Him.
Jesus is telling us that only by having trust in Him and doing what He asks us to do will ensure that we will overcome the situations, circumstances, trials, and tribulations that come upon us. We can and will withstand these things because we are anchored on a “rock” foundation that is not moved by any situation, circumstance, trial or tribulation.
On the contrary, if someone has little trust in what Jesus says then they will find themselves not doing what He asks of them and when those situations, circumstances, trials or tribulations come upon them they will suffer great loss.
Application: Examine yourself over the next thirty days to see how much trust and reliance you are putting in Jesus Christ in the various situations, circumstances, trials, and tribulations you encounter.
Do the following:
- Write down what situation, circumstance, trial or tribulation you find yourself confronted with.
- Write out the options you have concerning your responses to these areas by drawing a line down the middle of a piece of paper. On one side, label it “My Ideas” to solve the situation. On the other side, label it “Jesus’ Methods” to solve the situation.
- Use your Bible to locate various scriptures that speak to your situation. Write those scripture references on the side of your paper labeled “Jesus’ methods.”
- Compare your side to Jesus’ side and see what discrepancies exist between the way you would handle your situation and the way Jesus would. If there are discrepancies you will have to ask yourself how much you believe that Jesus’ methods are true and better than yours. The proof of your faith will be evident with your decision to follow Jesus’ methods.
- Record how many times you were successful following your methods’ versus how many times you were successful following Jesus’ methods.
Prayer: Lord, give me the desire to put into practice the truths of your Word concerning all of the situations, circumstances, trials or tribulations I find myself in. Strengthen my faith through my obedience in fully trusting and relying on your Word so that I can experience your wisdom of standing in you as my “rock” of deliverance. Change me, Lord. Change my habits of reliance on myself so that I can bring glory and honor to you in the way I respond to life’s challenges.
It is in Jesus name I pray. Amen.