I confess much of what Dietrich Bonhoeffer wrote is so deep it eludes me. I wrestle for hours with some of his instruction. Every now and then I come across something he wrote which is plain, simple, and at-once life-changing. One of those statements I read recently was, “My life is put to shame when what I rely on fails.”
It prompts one to reflect on their own life and ask, “On what am I relying? On what am I building my life? What is my foundation?” So, I will ask you, “What is your foundation?” One thing I know, Christ is reliable without fail. He is fail-proof. No one and nothing else can make this claim.
Anything you trust in other than Jesus will ultimately fail. Still, every day people are building their lives on a foundation other than Jesus. They rely on their intellect, their money, their social standing, or their powers of persuasion. All these things will fail. In fact, no matter what you come up with, I guarantee you it will fail. It will fail because it is not eternal. All things come to an end except for the always existing God. The One who knew no beginning also knows no end. Why wouldn’t you build your life on Him?
People don’t build on the fail-proof foundation of Jesus because they either don’t know Him or they don’t trust Him. I can’t think of any other reasons. Anything I can come up with can be traced back to not trusting Him. Jesus always has your best interest at heart. He created you to live an amazing and full life (John 10:10). He died for you to break the hold death held on you. He rose again to give you the path to eternal life. From the beginning, He has been striving for you, reaching for you, desperate for you. Why would we seek to build on any other foundation?
Self-sufficiency is the antithesis of faith. It is the opposite of surrender. Jesus demands both our faith and our surrender. Unless we trust Him completely and give everything we have to Him, we will be building on the wrong foundation. He can’t use us until we have surrendered our lives to Him. We’ve got to get out of our own way. If self-sufficiency worked, Jesus wouldn’t have needed to endure the cross. It doesn’t work. We are lost without Him.
What is your foundation? Are you building your dreams on top of things this world has given you? It’s all going to go away. The basis of all you do will crumble, and you’ll come crashing down with it. The systems of this world don’t work. They might look like they do in the short-term, but what is the eventual end to all of man’s endeavors? They end; they go away. Everything created by our hands will eventually deteriorate and be forgotten. Ah, but there is an alternative. We can begin with Jesus. Start there. Build on Him. He will not fail. Ever. It’s the only real choice. What is your foundation?