What does it mean to build our lives on the firm foundation of Jesus Christ? How will we live differently if we do so, both personally and as a community of his followers. These are some of the questions which we will be exploring this term. Our opening reflection is based around the following words of the Apostle Paul:
” By the grace God has given me, I laid a foundation as a wise builder, and someone else is building on it. But each one should build with care. 11 For no one can lay any foundation other than the one already laid, which is Jesus Christ. 12 If anyone builds on this foundation using gold, silver, costly stones, wood, hay or straw, 13 their work will be shown for what it is, because the Day will bring it to light. It will be revealed with fire, and the fire will test the quality of each person’s work. 14 If what has been built survives, the builder will receive a reward. 15 If it is burned up, the builder will suffer loss but yet will be saved—even though only as one escaping through the flames”
1 Corinthians 3:10-15
Three questions arise from this reading. Firstly, what are we building on? What is the foundation for our lives and our church?
Secondly, what are we building with? Do the materials we are using have eternal value or are they things which will fade away?
Finally, what are we building for? In the verses which follow Paul outlines the purpose of our building as the establishing of “temple in which God’s Spirit lives”. With all its failings and imperfections the purpose of the church is to be a community of people who honour and manifest the presence of God, to each other and the world around us.