“Take particular care in picking out your building materials. Eventually there is going to be an inspection. If you use cheap or inferior materials, you'll be found out. The inspection will be thorough and rigorous. You won't get by with a thing. If your work passes inspection, you’ll receive your reward; if it doesn't, your part of the building will be torn out and started over. But you won't be torn out; you'll survive—but just barely.” 1 Corinthians 3: 11-16
I think the original author of the well-known story, “The Three Little Pigs,” must have gotten her inspiration and ideas for the story, from today’s key verse. The two first pigs, were not careful in picking out their building materials and were found out after the wolf knocked their house down. They did not die, the wolf never ate them, but they just barely survived.
When I read the key verse, I thought- God, this is good! Read it three times if you have to, because if you look closely, you will find gold in that verse.
First off, why are we being told by Paul to choose material? What are we building? We are building our Spiritual Foundation. He is warning us to choose wisely our building materials that will construct the spinal cord to our spiritual life. Why? He writes clearly, “Because eventually, there will be an inspection.” Try thinking back on a time in your life when God has allowed you to go through a rough patch, into something we call a trial or test. Like always, God stood at the end of that dark tunnel and as we were walking out of it, He had his arms wide open and said, “See, you made it,” and plants a big kiss on our cheeks and gives us a huge bear hug! But there is something that comes next, our evaluation. I Imagine God still hugging me, but with compassionate words tells me, “I love you my princess, but here is your evaluation, review it, and try working on those areas that need help.” You did not die, but you barely survived! Ouch! I barely survived! Why? You did not pick out your building materials carefully.
Before the inspection, before the trial, you did not pick out the following materials: Fervent Prayer, Daily Consumptions of God’s Word, Patience, Self-control, Faithfulness, and Praise to God.
It’s my flesh that does not agree with my desires. My flesh hears the desires of my heart cry out loudly, but it does not send messages to my brain to move my hands and feet. I want to shout and beat this carnal body so many times when I reflect on wasted days, wasted opportunities, and wasted encounters with sweet, sweet Jesus and wasted material! I feel as though, not only does the enemy display to us what seem to be better things to do, but he also comes and steals our strength and injects a nasty dose of laziness and self-pity into our veins!
That’s what I say as I read my evaluation that reads that I barely survived. Cried, worried, stressed, and upset were my feeling through one trial. When God met me at the end of the tunnel, I felt ashamed! I barely survived I walked to meet Him with a weak, curved, spiritual spinal cord.
Hopeful, holding belief, strengthened, and wrapped in faith, she walked out of that tunnel, happy as God had her evaluation with a huge A+, and a reward sitting by His side. She did not barely survive, she survived with her head lifted high, and her spiritual spinal cord positioned firmly upright. That trial would not present itself again, because she headed to the warnings and constructed a firm foundation from the beginning.
What materials will you choose for your spiritual foundation today?