What is it to erode? It means to diminish or destroy by degrees, to wear away or cause to deteriorate or disappear. Erosion happens in all kinds of ways. The banks of a river over time, the sides of a hill when there is too much rain, and even relationships can erode with time if we don’t nurture and sustain them.
Do you remember the story of the houses built by the wise man and the foolish man? (Matt 7:21-27) The wise man built his upon the Rock. His house was strong and steady. It could withstand anything. He had every assurance that he was safe. Now the foolish man he built his on the sand and invariably when the storms got too big and there was too much rain, his house was washed away. I want to let you in on a little secret…the foolish man could have started out like the wise man. His house could have been built on the Rock but with time and a lack of concern, he could have let his foundation erode away. Sand started out as a rock, but with time it has disintegrated and wasted away due to erosion. Did you get that—EROSION.
What does this have to do with our relationship with Jesus, you might ask. Well—lots actually. We can use the analogy of ‘rock to sand’ to describe what we are allowing the world to do to God’s church. Most of the church believe they are still serving Jesus, our Rock, but the world has eroded and undermined our walk with Him. When you can’t tell the difference between the world and the church (which is us collectively) there is something terribly wrong. I’m not talking about a list of ‘rights and wrongs’ or a legalistic approach to God, but a change of the heart, a new and different attitude.
We, as followers of Jesus Christ, are to become more like Him with each day we wake. He is to be our priority…our first love. Our relationship with Jesus is just like any other we have, if we don’t maintain it, don’t encourage it, don’t work on it, it will fade, diminish, and eventually no longer be a relationship. Just think about people you knew in school. Some you were close to. You talked to them, went places together and believed you would always be in touch. But somewhere along the way you quit talking. Life happened—you and they got busy. You didn’t have as much spare time as before and slowly you lost touch. At this moment you don’t know them at all anymore. It is the same with Jesus.
How do I know? Because I have been there. I was 18 when I went into the military. Because I was saved and serving the Lord I also knew that God had placed me there. But because over time I allowed more of the world in my life and less time spent with my Savior, it was not too long before I completely turned my back on Him. It wasn’t an over night thing. It was a slow process but I let go of God because I had not maintained my relationship with Him. For many years I was lost and by all rights I should be dead. In 2000, Jesus started knocking on my heart again and inviting me back into a relationship with Him. I thank Him everyday that He was merciful enough to look past my rebellion and selfishness to give me one more chance.
Today, I’m not always as diligent as I should be sometimes but I refuse to give up trying to be more and more of what He desires me to be. The only way I can know what plans He has for me is to make sure my relationship with Him is not eroding…that my Rock is steadfast and firm. It takes work…it takes time…it takes perseverance, but it is the only thing in this life that is worth it all.
I have an opinion which I firmly believe is true and it goes something like this; If you are not moving forward in your relationship with Jesus you will eventually go backwards, and if you’re not careful you can lose it altogether. I believe that, because the world we live in is not conducive to us standing outside of a relationship with Jesus and not becoming like it. The devil is in his season. He is going around doing all he can to destroy God’s creation—us. He loves it when we don’t pick up and read our Bible, when we don’t find a quiet place where we can talk to and listen for our Father. He knows that the less we work on our relationship with Jesus the easier it will be for him to fool us. Our battles are not in the physical world but the spiritual…and the only way we can fight them effectively is with a close, close, close relationship with Jesus.
I want to be like the wise man…I want my foundation to be on the Rock. Jesus is the Rock of our salvation. He is our Strength and our Song. Let’s stop the erosion that can happen. Let’s begin today shoring up our foundation with praise, meditation, reading, studying, singing, loving…until all we see in the mirror is a reflection of Jesus.