Scripture: 1 Corinthians 3:1-23
Observation: Paul addresses some of the divisiveness in the church and points the Corinthians to pursue unity. He addresses the arguments of people claiming to follow him or another servant named Apollos and tells them there is only one worth following: Jesus Christ. Jesus is the foundation of the church. He finishes by encouraging them to humble themselves and remembering that it all goes back to Jesus himself.
Application: When my sister and I were younger, we loved playing Jenga at my nana’s house with our cousins. We’d pull out that long rectangular box and get to work stacking one small wooden piece on top of the other. Whereas lots of other games are about luck, there was some skill involved with Jenga and it came down to one thing: building a strong foundation. Without that strong foundation, you were left with a mess of scattered pieces when it inevitably fell.
If our lives are like a Jenga game, we’ll be lucky to build foundation that lasts us for a few rounds or seasons in our lives. But if our lives are based on Jesus, then we can be assured that our foundation is strong, durable, outlasting. A slight wobble or single piece out of place can’t threaten us when Jesus is our base.
“For no one can lay any foundation other than the one we already have – Jesus Christ.” (verse 11)
So, what are our lives, our relationships, our churches built on? Are they built on the lasting strength of Jesus Christ or some mishmash of our own materials, strewn together to the best of our own limited ability?
“But on judgment day, fire will reveal what kind of work each builder has done. The fire will show if a person’s work has any value. If the work survives, that builder will receive a reward. But if the work is burned up, the builder will suffer great loss.” (verses 13-15)
Paul makes it clear: we’re going to have to give an account one day of everything in our lives. On that day, what will happen? When the fires come, will what we’ve created endure? Are our lives built on a strong foundation, full of value to the people around us, or are our lives shallow and shaky? Did we base everything in our lives on our own humanly wisdom, our own Jenga-making selves, or on Jesus himself?
When Jesus is the foundation of our lives, the fire can’t hurt us. We can endure.
Prayer: God, I pray my life would be built on a strong foundation. I pray I’ll make Jesus the basis of everything in my life, leaving behind my own attempts to build and create a life. Life with you is life worth living. Amen.