Ephesians 2:19-22 – So then, you are no longer strangers and aliens, but you are fellow citizens with the saints and also members of the household of God, built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, with Christ Jesus himself as the cornerstone; in him the whole structure is joined together and grows into a holy temple in the Lord, in whom you also are built together spiritually into a dwelling place for God.
Storytelling has a long and rich history throughout human existence. Every culture since the beginning of life has shared experiences, taught skills, or entertained through the relating of tales. Whether factual narratives or embellished anecdotes, information has passed through generations of communicators mouth-to-ear and, in more recent times, through the written word.
When I read stories to my toddler grandson, he typically likes to hear my voice while he looks at the pictures. I love sitting together with a book, and I look forward to the time a few years from now when we can really get into some details in the plotlines. Right now, he knows what pigs are and that the wolf is “bad.” Other than that, he just giggles when I huff and puff to blow down a house.
I’ve never built a real house, but I’ve watched my husband over the years and have picked up some really important pointers. For example, a strong and appropriate footing is the key to success. The story of the three pigs doesn’t even address the groundwork, but I know there is more to building than simple materials. Without a strong foundation, even that brick house might have struggled to remain standing.
Prior to the availability of concrete, rebar and steel, foundations were often created out of rock – the first-placed stone being the most important. Soundly setting that cornerstone requires dedication, intentional effort, and great attention to detail. Once that piece is in position, everything else rests comfortably and securely in place. A proper cornerstone determines the location of all other stones and maintains the integrity of the entire structure.
The same concept of stability applies to any number of situations. Something as simple as nail polish works best if the foundation is prepared properly; throwing color on unmanicured nails often results in a mess. Families are no exception; a strong underpinning of faith makes a healthy difference in how the family functions and holds together. When the groundwork is in place, beautiful results follow.
The Apostle Paul is in prison when he writes to the people in Ephesus explaining that they are built on a strong foundation. He may be unable to be there for the building process, but their faith structure has a sturdy base. Not only do they have the prophets and apostles to hold them up, but Jesus Christ himself is the cornerstone! Resting on Christ’s dedication, intentional effort and great attention to detail enables each believer to rely on the integrity of Christian Love, and beautiful results follow in the form of eternal life.
As I walk each Lenten day with Jesus, may I constantly be reminded that my house is not only made of Love bricks, but it has the strongest of foundations that not even the destruction and chaos of a big bad wolf can blow down. With Jesus as my Cornerstone, I am set.
PRAYER FROM EPHESIANS 2
Holy God and Builder of all that is good, thank you for providing Jesus as my cornerstone. I want nothing more than my life to be built on his foundation. May every aspect of my personal construction be laid in relation to him, and may I be always dependent on his plans for me. Amen.