Is it possible to avoid the storms of life, with all of the pain and hardship that goes with them? Can wisdom and faith in God help steer a course away from these storms? Jesus answers these questions at the end of the Sermon on the Mount. Being wise and faithful will not stop the storms. In fact, he says these storms will come to those who are wise. This warning is surprising. The ending you might expect for this beautiful sermon would be a message of peace and safety. Instead, Jesus finishes with urgent concerns about false teachers and the ravaging storms of life.
Therefore, Christ’s focus is not on avoiding the storms, but how can you remain secure when the storms strike. The storms are sure to come. You recall that Jesus speaks about two houses both caught in the same storm. Jesus is talking about your life. The same storm with the rains, the rising streams, and damaging winds to each house. The well-being of each house rests not upon the elaborateness and beauty of its construction, but upon the solidness of its foundation. The wise builder’s house is built on the foundation of wisdom. The foolish builder’s house is built without concern for God’s truth. The wise builder’s house stands firm in the storm. The house of the foolish builder falls with a great crash. In the Proverbs, we learn the wise are those who fear God and the foolish are those who live as if there is no God.
Thus, it is foolish to think you can avoid the storms of life. They come with equal ferocity to wise and foolish alike. The lesson to be learned from Christ’s teaching is that you cannot determine God’s faithfulness by the circumstances and storms of your life. You determine God’s faithfulness by the content of his character that is displayed in his word. God says he will never leave us or forsake us. This is easy to say on a sunny day. But this is just as true when the storms rage.
Perhaps you are living in the middle of a furious storm right now. Relationships may bring pain rather than peace. Maybe you are recovering from a devastating storm that has past or maybe you are living in fear of the storm that is coming.
Whatever the case, God’s covenant love is steadfast. Your foundation is sure even though the storm rages around you. God is your rock, your strength, and your peace forever.
Listen carefully to Jesus. Don’t be shocked or surprised by life’s storms. His warning is kind and gracious. The storms are coming. Prepare for the storms by having the word of Christ dwell richly within you. The storms are certain. But so is the word of God. He will be with you in the storm, no matter how strong. Build your life on the sure foundation of his truth. In God alone is found safety!