I’m glad I was born in the 20th Century. This time and place suits me perfectly. I was born in a world that has google maps. That’s a huge plus for me. I’m thankful google maps is a free app. Don’t tell them (who am I kidding, we know they are always listening) but I don’t even want to think about what I would pay for google maps. A LOT of money. But this time and place suits me for other reasons as well.
I’m an INFJ. Now, that may mean nothing to you whatsoever, and if it doesn’t, that’s not a problem. It’s based on the Myers-Briggs Personality Type Indicator system. I’m a total nerd with this stuff! If you want to take the test and find out your MBTI type, you can here. (Just make sure to friend me at firstname.lastname@example.org so that we can nerd out together!) As an INFJ, my inferior function, is extroverted sensing. What’s that mean? Well, you can google it, but my translation is: I have two left hands. And I am really right hand dominant. If something needs fixed at the house, I watch the kids and Brenna look at it. Just the reality.
This leads me back to my first point. I’m really glad I was born in the present time because if I had to work with my hands for a living, well, I would survive, but barely. If I was one of the Old Testament greats, I don’t think I would be Noah, unless Noah was just a project manager as well as being a preacher of righteousness! Maybe I would be more like Abraham, I’m pretty good at driving long distances. The point is, if I had to build a house for myself, I would live in a sad, sad house. So, I’m thankful, that the market works the way that it does and there are many options for a guy like me who would fail on day one of the construction site.
However, recently, I’ve been thinking about how there is much more to building than just residential homes and commercial structures. Our spiritual lives and our character are built piece by piece and brick by brick. This building is one that cannot be neglected if we want to hear: “‘Well done, good and faithful slave…enter into the joy of your master” (Matthew 25:21) Our current spiritual structure is a result of how we have previously built. That is a fact that doesn’t care about our feelings. I have some good news though! We have today to be able to build.
Therefore, our focus as a congregation is going to be on foundations in 2022. Because no matter where you are in your walk with Christ, the fundamentals are essential. If you are a new Christian, you want to make sure the foundation for your faith building is strong! If you are more experienced in your walk, it is important to continue to build your knowledge and practice of the basics. If you are working with others, whether in Bible studies or discipling your own children, you know the basics are key.
The church has one foundation, the apostles and New Testament prophets, with Jesus Himself being the One Cornerstone (Eph. 2:20). Our talk of foundations includes this doctrinal truth, but we will be delving into different fundamental aspects of our lives, and that is what I am referring to when I talk about fundamental foundations. The whole of our lives is submission to God (John 4:24) and we want to grow our internal strength.
I am going to be talking more about the importance of internal strength, but I want to include one more thought for completeness. There are at least two major reasons to grow internal strength.
First, a strong faith is necessary to be able to withstand the storms of life. The past few years have clearly demonstrated a timeless truth, that “all who desire to live godly in Christ Jesus will be persecuted but evil men and imposters will proceed from bad to worse, deceiving and being deceived.” (2 Tim 3:12-13) Your faith needs to be able to stand (1 Cor. 10:12), in the time that the Lord has placed you(Esther 4:14). Strengthening our faith will give us the courage to overcome. Strengthening our faith will give us the fortitude to be like Hananiah, Mishael and Azariah who faithfully responded to Nebuchadnezzer when faced with the fiery furnace: ““O Nebuchadnezzar, we do not need to give you an answer concerning this matter. If it be so, our God whom we serve is able to deliver us from the furnace of blazing fire; and He will deliver us out of your hand, O king. But even if He does not, let it be known to you, O king, that we are not going to serve your gods or worship the golden image that you have set up.” How inspiring is their faith!
Second, from the beginning, it’s essential to know that we are growing our internal strength for an external purpose! Jesus came to seek and save the lost! (Luke 19:10) The fields are still white for harvest! (John 4:35) It is my belief that God has a huge part for the saints in Wauseon to play in executing His plan. We want to grow our fundamentals so that we will be able to change the world by fulfilling Jesus’ Great Commission for His church. (Matthew 28:18-20)
As we are discussing fundamentals, first look at your own life, but it’s not JUST that. It’s so much more! It’s turning the world upside down today emanating from our congregation, our community, into all the world, for eternity. Just like they did in the first century. We have some world turning to do, one foundation at a time! (Acts 17:6)