Sunday, September 2, 2018

Word for the day by Christian Education Forum

Matthew 7: 24-29
"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." (Matthew 7:24)
We are living in an era of information revolution and technological sophistication. But the values inculcated by the modem education system desperately fail to equip our children to face the harsh realities of life. In this context, we need to emphasize the importance of choosing wisdom based on Jesus closing remarks on the Sermon on the Mount. Wisdom is choosing life, when faced with life and death.
Mark of wisdom — Building life on unshakable foundation: After his long teachings, Jesus contents that mere confession of Jesus means nothing apart from doing as Jesus teaches. Building a house is like building a life. The two builders correspond to people, their houses to the lives they construct. Only two things distinguish the houses: the builders and the foundations. One builder is wise while the other is foolish. The wise builder construct upon rock, the foolish one upon sand. The key in this system of images is the foundation. If we are able to build our life on the strong foundation, our life will be strong, meaningful and successful. "Those who trust in the Lord are like mount Zion, which can never be shaken, never be moved." (Psalms 125:1) The famous hymn by Edward Mote is worth meditating. "My hope is built on nothing less/ Than Jesus blood and righteousness/ In every high and storming gale/ My anchor holds within the veil/ On Christ the solid rock I standAll other ground is sinking sand".
Fruit of wisdom — withstanding adversities: The person who hears the words of Jesus and puts them into practice is not moved or destroyed by the calamities that may come. Every day we are threatened by a host of events — natural calamities, terrorist attacks, war, homicides, atrocities, economic deprivation, joblessness, exploitation.., the list has no end. Withstanding literally means outliving. We have noticed certain trees that survive even after heavy storms because it has deep roots in to the earth. There are invisible forces of support that help them to withstand. As Christians we must be able to identify the invisible means of support that help us to face the realities of life — an unshakable faith in God. Martin Luther, the man behind the Protestant reformation, had to face so many threats and hardships while spreading the spirit of reformation because it aroused animosity and displeasure of the Church authorities. Once, a Cardinal a close friend of Luther asked him, what he would do if the Pope took disciplinary action against him. There was every possibility that he would be excommunicated from the Catholic Church. Luther responded smilingly: "Then, as now in the hands of God".
Lord, grant us the wisdom to build our lives foundation on the Rock of Ages and give us the courage to face the storms and waves of this world. Amen.

Foundations that last require lot of time and effort.
Christian Education Forum, Diocese of NAE of the Mar Thoma Churc