#142 (15/08/04)
Lessons to Learn for our Tomorrows

The Message

By: Robert A. Schuller

Special Guest

He started as a child prodigy and since then he has played for 8 U.S. presidents, has recorded 115 albums, 15 have gone either gold or platinum. He is the first pianist to receive a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. His recordings of “Autumn Leaves”.. His recording of “Autumn Leaves” is the only piano instrument to ever reach #1 on billboard singles chart.

Jim Towey founded and ran Aging with Dignity, a national non-profit organization that helps plan, the families plan for a special illness.

Special Music

" Joyful, Joyful.. "
" Majesty "
" Only Believe "
“Now is the Time for Faith”

" I Waited for the Lord "

PIANO SOLO – ROGER WILLIAMS - "A Mighty Fortress is Our God"
PIANO SOLO – ROGER WILLIAMS – “Sweet Hour of Prayer”

Acticle of The Message

Today I am speaking about Lessons to Learn for our Tomorrows; that is Dont Throw Away Tomorrow! We need to hold on to our tomorrows because our tomorrows make us who we are. You know my father and I have done many things together. I remember as a young man helping him clean out his closets. He would clean out closets totally different than I do today. We are opposites in that regard. He would say, bring the trash can. Id haul the trash can in, everything would go in the trash can and the closet would be clean. It was very simple. Today, if I am going to clean a closet I spend a great deal of time meticulously making sure I dont throw away anything that possibly might have value. I can easily lose track of time, and my tomorrow, in the time I spend rummaging through my closet saving things. We get hung up on things so easily, dont we? We lose track of the reality of Gods love for us and the meaning of life. Its not about things at all. Life is about people. Its about loving others. Its about the grace of Jesus Christ.

The lesson we have to learn more than anything else is about building a firm foundation so that our tomorrows are stable and ready to accept that which we have done today. I believe that life is a process of doing things day after day which continually builds a stronger foundation and builds the kingdom of God.

If you have ever attended any Christian camp or Sunday school you have probably heard the words to the following song. The song is based on the scripture Matthew 7:24-27. The words to the song are:

"The wise man built his house upon a rock.
The wise man built his house upon a rock.
The wise man built his house upon a rock and the rains came tumbling down.
The rains came down and the floods came up.
The rains came down and the floods came up.
The rains came down and the floods camp up
and the house on the rock stood firm.
The foolish man built his house upon the sand.
The foolish man built his house upon the sand.
The foolish man built his house upon the sand
and the rains came tumbling down.
The rains came down and the floods came up.
The rains came down and the floods came up.
The rains came down and the floods came up and the house on the sand went CRASH!" [1]

The context of this wonderful parable that Jesus gives us is actually found at the end of his Sermon on the Mount, the greatest sermon ever preached. He precedes this by saying, those who listen to my words are the wise people. Those who do not listen to my words are the foolish people. So, the people who follow Jesus are the wise people. For in following Jesus they are building a foundation for tomorrow that grows day after day and creates the house and the kingdom of God. I have always interpreted this scripture passage very personally. I have taken it as my understanding of my salvation with Jesus Christ. If I truly believe in Jesus Christ as my personal Lord and Savior, then I have built my house upon a rock. I believe this is a very integral part of this wonderful passage because I know the importance of a solid foundation.

I lived in a house in San Juan Capistrano for 20 years and 2 years ago I sold that house. The house I sold was a nice, comfortable house. I bought a much smaller house in Laguna Beach. The Laguna Beach house was a 2-story house, but there was actually a space underneath the house that had a 10 foot ceiling and it had walls. I envisioned actually building a stairway to go down there and enlarging the house by 30%. I figured all I had to do was put some dry wall on the walls and put down a cement floor. We did the excavations and we poured the cement. The inspector told us, well, you know, youve excavated the foundation but thats not good enough. So ultimately, we had to see an engineer to have plans drawn up and we had to re-fortify the foundation with rebar and cement. Well, the good news is the foundation for my home is now firm and strong but it required a lot of work and a lot of effort!

We are so concerned about the foundation for our homes, what about the foundation for our lives? We have to realize the foundation of our life has to be one that is firm and solid. The firm and solid foundation is Jesus Christ and His instructions that He gives to us as His people. We have to be open to Him and willing to follow Him. I see so many people whose lives are in disarray. We have to realize we are the center of our own world. Every single human being has their own little world. If you are in a world that is full of chaos its time to look at the center of your world. Look at yourself and ask yourself this question: who is sitting on the throne of my life? Who is in charge of my life? As long as the answer is me, myself and I, your life will continue to remain in chaos. Not until you are ready, willing and able to step off of the throne of your life and allow Jesus Christ to step on that throne will your life begin to have meaning, understanding, peace, and joy.

These are the words of Jesus Christ. I stand at the door and knock. Anyone who opens the door, I will come in and I will eat with him and he with Me. (Revelation 3:20) We have to realize that I cant, He can, let Him. Let Jesus Christ sit on the throne of your life and become the center of all that surrounds you. You will experience a peace and understanding and an organization of life that you never dreamed possible.

The Matthew 7:24-27 passage of scripture doesnt end with the understanding of our personal relationship with Jesus Christ. In fact, the word house in Greek is actually translated household. If this is the case, then our house is more than just our own personal self; its our entire family. I believe that Jesus wants us to share His words with our families.

There is nothing scarier in the whole world than what happened to my wife and I a few weeks ago. It was 10:30 at night and our children were out. It was a Friday night and they had borrowed the car. We received a phone call from the Laguna Beach Police Department telling us that our car had been involved in an accident. We were absolutely petrified until they said it was parked on the Coast Highway and somebody hit it. The fear was unbelievable until we found out that the children were fine.

It is amazing how much time we spend in fear instead of focusing on the foundation of God, on the foundation of our household.

The most important thing we can do as Gods people is to share His love, share Christs words with our children, our parents, our brothers, our sisters, our household. It starts with experiencing and realizing that Jesus Christ is the center of your life and He is only there when you invite him to be there. The wise man is the one who builds his household upon the rock. When the rains come and the storms come, that house will not fall.

Our family extends beyond the four walls of our house. Our families extend into the household of God. We are all children of God and we are all brothers and sisters in Christ. As such, we need to respect, love and share this wonderful good news with everyone. One of my favorite hymns is The Church is One Foundation. Its words go like this:

The Church is one foundation
Is Jesus Christ her Lord.
She is His new creation,
By water and the word
From heaven he came and sought her
To be His holy bride
With His own love he bought her
And for her life he died.

You have been bought with a price. You have been called for a purpose. It is time to clean out the closet of your heart where you have those skeletons hanging, those sins that you dont want anyone to know. Replace that darkness with the light of Jesus Christ. Open the doors of your heart and allow Jesus Christ to shine and to bring grace and glory. Dont throw away tomorrow. Embrace tomorrow by building on the rock of Jesus Christ!

Dear Heavenly Father, we thank you that you are our Rock, that upon this Rock you will build your church. And so, O God, we thank you for the privilege of being able to be with other people who love you, who embrace your words, who are part of your church. So we thank you, God, for our families. We thank you for our extended family. We thank you that you are a God who cares and loves. We love you, Lord, and we praise your name. Amen.

1. Anonymous; Adapted from Matthew 7:24-27
2. Words: Samuel J. Stone, 1866; Music: Samuel S. Wesley, 1864

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