Have you ever felt that you needed an anchor for your life? That the storms of life were trying to smash you on the rocks? For some people,
it might be family problems. For others, it might be the loss of a job, the death of a loved one, or a serious illness.
Such trials can overwhelm us like a wave that crashes upon a
ship. Gone are the memories of peaceful sailing on smooth seas—all we can think
of for the moment is the trial we are in right now. Will we survive, or will we
sink? Sometimes the turmoil is so great that sinking doesn’t seem that bad of
To weather the storms of life, we need an anchor to keep us
in place, to keep us from being swept toward the rocky shore, to keep us from
capsizing and sinking. What is our anchor?
The book of Hebrews tells us that we have an anchor—the sure
hope of salvation through Jesus Christ.
This is the hope set before us, the
hope that greatly encourages us. “We have this hope as an anchor for the soul,
firm and secure” (Hebrews 6:18-19).
Verse 20 tells us that this hope enters the presence of God
in heaven, where Jesus is already helping us. Our hope of eternal life is
anchored in heaven, where the storms of this life can never sink our ship! Our
salvation is safe and secure.
The storms still come, though, and rage around us. The waves
beat on us, but we need not fear—our anchor is in the unsinkable heavens. Our
lives are safeguarded by Jesus himself. Our anchor will keep our lives safe—as
long as life itself will last. That means forever! We have an anchor for life,
a point of stability when life gets rough. Don’t wait for the storms to
begin—anchor your life in Jesus now!
Parable of Stability
Jesus taught something similar in the Sermon on the Mount:
Everyone who hears these words of mine and puts them into
practice is like a wise man who built his house on the rock. The rain came
down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house; yet it
did not fall, because it had its foundation on the rock. But everyone who hears
these words of mine and does not put them into practice is like a foolish man
who built his house on sand. The rain came down, the streams rose, and the
winds blew and beat against that house, and it fell with a great crash. (Matthew
Jesus describes two groups of people: those who follow him,
and those who don’t. Both types of people build good-looking houses. Both types
of people can appear to have their lives in order. But the storms of life
strike them both, and the houses are tested not so much for how they look on
the outside, but how well they are built underneath.
Listening to Jesus does not prevent the rain, water and
wind—the problems of life—but it does prevent collapse. When the storms of life
beat upon us, we need some solid foundations to keep us steady.
Jesus advises us to build our lives not just on hearing his
words, but on putting them into practice. We need more than the name of
Jesus—we need a willingness to do what he says, to trust him not just with the
future, but to trust him in life right now.
If we hear the words but do not obey what Jesus says, our
lives might look good on the surface. But eventually the trials come, and our
lives can fall apart, or become unraveled or capsize—choose whichever metaphor
you want. The point is that life works best when we do what Jesus says.
Jesus does not force us to obey, but he gives us a choice.
He tells us what will happen if we don’t. Our behavior shows whether we believe
him, and whether we trust him.
Seeking a Foundation
If we want a basis of stability in times of trouble, then we
need to consult the teachings of Jesus. We should not wait for the storms to
begin—we should get right habits right now.
But how do we do that? Wait for Jesus to pop down in our
home to tell us what we ought to do? No. In most cases the words of Jesus are
already in our homes. What we need to do is to take the initiative to learn
what they are, and to do what he says. Don’t assume you know, just because you
read it a few years ago. If you really want a stable foundation, you need to
read it again. You can’t build on the right foundation unless you know what it
What you learned a few years ago may have been good enough
for then, but you have probably forgotten a few things, and you might learn
even more, now that you have more life experience. I encourage you: Keep
learning—keep growing—keep strengthening your connection with the true
foundation of life. No one else can do it for you.