Tag Archives: Abba

2020 VISION: Short, Sweet #9

Blessed are the people who know the joyful sound!
They walk, O Lord, in the light of Your countenance.

In Your name they rejoice all day long,
And in Your righteousness they are exalted.
For You are the glory of their strength,
And in Your favor our horn is exalted.

For our shield belongs to the Lord,
And our king to the Holy One of Israel” (Ps. 89:15-18).

The sun has set in NC, so the Feast of Trumpets and High Holy Days have begun. When Jesus was a boy, He would walk for 6 days to get to Jerusalem – that is how important it was for family and friends to make the journey.  10 days of worshiping the Father and listening for His voice. 

“But the LORD God called out to the man,“Where are you?” Gen 3:9

Jewish sages say that in the days leading up to the High Holy Days, Abba comes down to earth and wanders among His people as He did during the days of the Garden for this is the day of Creation.  5781 years ago – the Day He drew a deep breath and spoke, “Light Be!”  So He comes.  Calling to His children to return to Him.  Wanting them to seek His face.  Missing His friends and wishing they could walk together as they once did long ago.

“Where there is no vision, the people cast off restraint; but blessed is he who keeps the Law.” Prov 29:18

Yeshua Ha-Mashiach brought us a vision 2000 years ago. He walked among us with power, signs and wonders or we would call them – miracles. A reminder that Abba’s desire is always to walk with us.  A reminder that as we look within, seek deep introspection, and find our knees in repentance that Jesus stands beside us, His hand resting on our head, and the Father doesn’t have to ask any longer, “Where are you?”

Blow the shofar. 

Light the candles. 

Eat the Bread. 

Drink the wine. 

Sing praises of Awe to Him who continues to seek us even in the dark of the night because He misses us and loves us beyond comprehension. 

Shofar

[google images]

VISION 2020: Short, Sweet, #12

“Listen, my sons, to a father’s instruction;
    pay attention and gain understanding.
 I give you sound learning,
    so do not forsake my teaching.”
Prov 4:1-2

Today was one of those days that I had to depend on others’ wisdom.  It never fails to amaze me when a young lady can stick a needle into an arm, draw out several vials of blood in less than 5 minutes, and leave nary a trace of having been done any of that.  It takes me longer to eat a chocolate chip cookie.  Not to mention, a doctor who can make me laugh and relax while he cracks several different bones in this aging body.

Now that is “sound learning” beyond my understanding, and believe me, I’m really glad that they didn’t forsake their teaching as they did their jobs.

“The more I learn, the less I know…the more I learn, the more I realize…the less I know.” Yentl

The wisdom of the Torah says this is a special time of year. If Jesus still walked the earth, He would have already turned his steps towards Jerusalem so that He could be in Jerusalem by Friday night, the start of the Sabbath.  This year, the first day of Tishrei or commonly called, Rosh Hashanah begins on the Sabbath.  The blowing of the shofar; a ram’s horn calls Jews with a hundred notes of Awe into 10 days of repentance. 

The wisdom of repentance…of seeking…of listening……

As these days lead up to a prayer march in Washington DC on September 26, what better way than to look to the Vine from which we sprung?  Using the wisdom in the Book of Life that Abba gave us as a guide book.  Following the steps of Yeshua Ha-Mashiach into 10 days of introspection, repentance, and seeking wisdom for places where we strayed out of His footsteps. 

[Greg Olsen artwork]

2020 VISION: Locusts’ Year.


“I will repay you for the years the locusts have eaten— the great locust and the young locust, the other locusts and the locust swarm—my great army that I sent among you.” Joel 2:25


I tend to read many Bible verses during the day. Most of them I know well. My eyes start them, the mind finishes them – or the mind goes off on a tangent that is completely off topic (which happens way more than I like, lately). The evil one is good at that – then again – so is old age. ha


This morning, this one caught me. Held me. I circled it in my book and then, I circled it again. I didn’t remember ever reading it before.


I know I have read the lesser prophets a few times. I have read their commentaries before, but still – my mind drew a blank on Joel and this verse in particular. So – praising the LORD for technology – I went to the Torah commentaries this time and read and read and read – – – especially after I heard this verse again tonight.


When Abba is trying to get my attention, He always does something twice. If He does it three times – well – let’s just say…I try to avoid that situation and get my head in the game.


“Blow the ram’s horn in Zion; sound the alarm on My holy mountain! Let all who dwell in the land tremble, for the Day of the LORD is coming; indeed, it is near— “ v.1


Being retired and working in a Christian school is my retirement blessing, but it is also an monastery of sorts. I don’t generally have to interact with people who think differently than I do for long periods of time. Talking about prayer, the idols of this world, and the Grace of the Father wraps its own little blanket of His warmth and peace around me as I watch the locusts that swirl daily on social media and TV. I forget how others form their own world views in entirely different patterns and shifting sands of human wisdom.


Tears come too easily these days when I see how lost we are as a culture – as combined global cultures.


“Yet even now,” declares the LORD, “return to Me with all your heart,with fasting, weeping, and mourning.” v.12


The locusts have come, literally and figuratively, this year in abundance all around the world. The birth pangs – the harbingers – whatever you want to call it – coming at more regular intervals since 9/11. The prophets are out there. Messianic and Jewish combined together now. Crying out to the vine – calling out to the branches – while those who should be guarding the flocks they have been given – have stuffed their ears with their fingers and closed their eyes to the verses jumping off the pages at them – just as the Pharisees and Sadducees of long ago did before them.


The Holy Spirit is still speaking, but only in the grace of love and not with the disgust of hate.


“Behold, I will send you grain, new wine, and oil, and by them you will be satisfied.” v.19

Since the locusts in their various shapes have come in 2020, I continue to fill and check my lamp throughout the day and night, for I have known since I laid under a giant oak tree, long ago in a small little town, that I have been born for such a time as this. I truly have been waiting all my life for such a time as this – fallen, broken, repentant – for such a time as this.


“Then you will know that I am present in Israel, and that I am the LORD your God, and there is no other.” v.27

PANDEMIC 2020 VISION: The Tomb

They hid behind the shuttered windows. Lamps unlit. One shaking person here. Two there. Another a little further away. They feared to travel too far. After all – they might be seen. The earthquake had only intensified their fear. Like all enslaved societies, communication was passed despite the restrictions. Who was where – assorted tales of news – some true – some false. It was said even the Sanhedrin was in hiding within their own homes until the damage to the temple could be assessed further. Only three truly rested in peace.

Mother Mary, the other Mary and John.

Their feet stumbled all the way to the cross focused only on the One they loved. Their eyes saw the brokenness of sin covered by the glory of love’s mercy . Their ears opened to the vile evil the world offered, but broken by the blessed words “It is finished”. They fell when the earth shook the stones loose from under their feet. They covered their heads as best they could when the heavens cried its wracking sobs and pelted their heads with it. And when His body was lowered into their arms, they were covered with the blood that He had shed – for them – for all of them – for that is what he had said.

Could it only be just a day ago they had sat together laughing,talking, and praising Abba?

Mother Mary wrapped Him in His final swaddling clothes.

Joseph of Arimathea and his hirelings hurried them along. Passover Sabbath drawing closer as the sun sank deeper into the west
The Tomb.
The stone.
A short journey to his home where they would all rest as required.

They would be safe with him. He had put his protection around the three of them. As shaken as Caiaphas had been after the temple was damaged, Joseph was certain he would not move against any of the others, but he could not promise any more than that. Nicodemus would let him know if that changed.

The blessed Sabbath passed slowly, A trickle of information was passed despite the restrictions that were in place for this day. Joseph watched – he listened – he prayed for his three visitors. He had especially been watching Yeshua’s mother. His wife and children couldn’t seem to leave her presence. They sat at her feet as did John and the other Mary. It was as if Yeshua was still among them. Tears still colored her eyes and nose, but her voice strong as she told stories of her son as a child and laid her hands upon them all. Later, they sang their prayers and thankfulness to Abba.

Joseph rubbed the back of his head and adjusted his head covering. Funny, he had never thought of G-D as Abba until he had listened to Yeshua. Now, as he watched this mother grieve her son, he could not think of G-D any other way. Although – sadly – he could not speak that faith out loud. He turned his face away as tears threatened to expose him to his world. He had done the best he could, he thought angrily. He got up and shuttered the windows against the night – at the darkness that threatened to invade.

Shortly after, Nicodemus appeared at the door. A small hand wagon full of the spices that must be applied in accordance with the laws. Mother Mary, John, and the other Mary traveled with their protectors to the tomb. The Roman soldiers stood impatiently aside as the Jews went about their rituals, but their displeasure was as obvious as the darkness stealing away the light.

Tomorrow would come. They would finish what needed to be done then. When Joseph mentioned that they would seal it permanently, Mother Mary smiled sadly at him. Again, his spirit was disturbed. It was as if she carried a secret. He glanced at Nicodemus who was also staring intently at Yeshua’s mother. What was it about her that made him seek to do everything he could to protect her – to be near her??

Joseph shrugged and hurried the small group to return home before the deep dark of the evening descended. He didn’t trust the undercurrents that seemed to still shake the air around him, just as the earth had shaken under his feet yesterday. He had seen the torn curtain – the fallen stones – the shattered trappings of ritual tossed as if they had been discarded by an angry hand.

Yeshua was dead.
His disciples scattered.
The ministry of the gifted rabbi broken before it had a chance to grow larger.

Joseph and Nicodemus looked at each other one more time before they went their separate ways. Joseph knew they were thinking much the same thing. The world had changed. This time of sheltering under the blood of the lamb had changed the world. They just hadn’t realized that it was the blood of a different Passover Lamb that was changing the world far more than they could ever imagine. passion of christ [google image]

RIGHTEOUS ANGER

Wrestling with GOD is not easy – – – especially when you don’t know you are wrestling with Him. I had no clue – no comparison on which to logically understand any of what was going on inside of me. The restlessness. The questioning. The internal tsunami that seemed to continually wash over me without end. I only knew that today as I broke the communion wafer and drank the “wine” – wisdom managed to bridge all the barriers I had erected and showed me the face of it all.
 
I was angry. Not angry at life or the people or the circumstances which presently surround me. But angry all the same. Angry with my Father. Angry with my GOD. Angry about the fiery lesson that seemed to be burning all around me.  I don’t like fiery furnaces at all.
Why me?
Why now?
What are YOU thinking?
What possible glimmer of goodness can come out of this bog?
You know I HATE this, right?!?!
 
“There is no one holy like the LORD; there is no one besides you; there is no Rock like our God.”~1 Sam 2:2
 
It is a hard thing when you realize you have been wrestling the One who loves you best. The One whom you love best. The One who is beyond knowing and yet known. The One who is I AM. The One who is Abba Father.
 
Hannah wrestled with this same anger in the Bible. She wanted a child in the worst way. She prayed and prayed. Her husband tried to give her material things to make up for it. The priest accused her of being drunk with her sorrow. When in reality, Hannah was praying out her anger and sharing it with the only One who knew the depths of that anger and pain of the situation. The only One who could understand the depths of all her emotions. The One who would be the Rock beneath her feet until the wisdom of the time could bridge the anger barriers and restore her peace.
 
That was her wrestling.
 
That was when I AM met her. Lifted her out of the miry bog and put her feet upon Himself.
 
Enter through the narrow gate. For wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it. But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it.~Matt 7:13-14
 
Our Father is so good. Wisdom manages to break down the barriers eventually when Truth is spoken. A fire quenched. A deep breath drawn. A trail of tears dried.
 
The mind was – and is still – boggled with the illuminating presence of peace. And yet – as if to confirm that it is of Him – He sends at least two or three confirmations in quick succession to reassure my stumbling mind. A video devotional. A big brother’s phone call. Anger is okay. God understands it. Our Father reaches out to reassure in response. The Son smiles and holds the trembling hands. The Spirit nudges.
 
Righteous anger is something a Christ follower has trouble with in this life – – especially when one has spent a lifetime avoiding “anger” and “out-of-control” situations. However, righteous anger is the exact opposite – it is total control. It is that realistic,
“no-blinders-on” look at a situation and responding in the most simple, basic, organic way possible with the only One who knows every side, every word, every action, every thought, every motivation that led to this point in time. A totally honest – if angry – conversation with the Father who loves us best.
 
And that is what happened today.
 
I’m not sure if any of this makes sense. I’m not sure why I am sharing these thoughts – except – that inner nudge that says – “Share”. So here it is. The rather focused thoughts on the wisdom of my day. Just let it be known that wrestling with GOD is not my favorite thing in the world. The last couple of days have not been fun. Yet as I cuddle this new Wisdom Baby close tonight, and as my eyes grow heavier, I can feel two hands pulling a soft, pink blanket up around us both. (Why it is pink I have no idea – but pink it is.)
 
We are warm.
We are safe.
We are at peace.
And tonight, I realize in that hidden fount  of life deep within me
that I need –
I must rejoice in ALL things –
ALWAYS!
 
“Even before they call, I will answer, and while they are still speaking, I will hear.” Is 65:24 and “This third I will bring through the fire; I will refine them like silver and test them like gold. They will call on My name, and I will answer them. I will say, ‘They are My people,’ and they will say, ‘The LORD is our God.'”~Zech 13:9
anger   [google image]

LENTEN INSIGHT 2019 #1:

Now tell me again why “Thoughts and Prayers” don’t matter??

THOUGHTS

How many times did Christ mention thoughts? Thoughts that cause us to sin. Thoughts that show our love for others. Thoughts that direct our paths. Thoughts in our Be-Attitudes. Thoughts that He shared with all He encountered. Thoughts that shape the mind – the body – the faith.

PRAYERS

Time and time again, the Gospels mention Rabbi Yeshua praying. Praying with those around Him. Praying with a crowd. Praying over meals. Praying in the temple. Praying all alone – in the dark of night – in the early hours of the morning – for others – for Himself – in praise and thankfulness to His Abba.

 

“Thoughts and Prayers” matter. 

They mattered to the early Christians as they faced the lions – faced stoning – faced crucifixion.

They matter on the battlefield of war – of illness – of addiction.

They matter to me. 

They matter to Christ.

They matter to Our Father-GOD.

“Now it came to pass in those days that [Jesus] went out to the mountain to pray, and continued all night in prayer to God.”~Lk 6:12               alpha-and-omega-greg-olsen   [Greg Olsen artwork]

LIGHTS OUT #2

“The day is cold, and dark, and dreary;
It rains, and the wind is never weary…”

It has been one of those winters. Cold – dark – dreary – and – sigh upon sigh – rain, rain and more rain. As I pulled a candle out of the window tonight, I looked out into the darkness. There are only two candles left and on Mardi Gras/Fat Tuesday/Pancake Day, I will pack that last Light of Advent away until late Fall of 2019.

How time flies.

“My thoughts still cling to the mouldering Past,
But the hopes of youth fall thick in the blast…”

Yesterday was a beautiful Spring-like day. I dug in the soil. Got my hands dirty. Moved a couple big rocks and pulled a muscle (which – btw – still hurts – hence the whining). Laughed with my Grands as they tried to follow the birds fighting over their place at the feeders. Picked at the flower beds a little here – a little there. And tonight? Not a star in sight. Even the neighbor’s security lights were dimmed in the heaviness of heaven’s tears. And…I sighed again as I turned off the candle’s light.

Just then – as I was beginning to write – that memorable line popped into my head…”Into each life some rain must fall…”

“Be still, sad heart! and cease repining;
Behind the clouds is the sun still shining;
Thy fate is the common fate of all,
Into each life some rain must fall,
Some days must be dark and dreary.”~Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, “The Rainy Day

I remember memorizing this poem in grade school. We memorized many poems back in the day. Have no idea why or what teachers required them; I just know we did it. Often the lines of those poems will pop up in my head. I never seem to remember the whole, but I remember in part. Luckily, we have search engines, and I don’t have to dig through a pile of books trying to find an obscure line in a poem that I might or might not have on my dusty shelves.

We also read Bible stories, memorized Bible verses, sang hymns/carols and prayed. These tend to be a little more in-focus, but it seems I can never – ever remember the book or the chapter or the number of those verses. (Is that whining again?)  I remember in part but never the whole.

“The Lord is compassionate and gracious,
slow to anger, abounding in love.”~Ps 103:8

Not sure where this going.I started out with one idea in my head, and now, here I am walking in faith with my words. I’ll blame it on this amazing teacher/preacher, Jason Brown, former NFL player turned farmer, who spoke at our church today. I may have extinguished another candle in my home, but Mr. Brown’s sermon is still lighting up my soul with thoughts about faith and how we need to walk through this life with faith. I love it when the Holy Spirit moves me to think and re-think understandings of His WORD.

Better than candles in the window. Better than a man-made light on a rainy night. I have the Living Light of His WORD for this new Lenten season. I needed this reminder today. Come to think of it – I need it everyday. I needed it everyday while I was growing up. I needed it everyday when I was in open rebellion of His WORD. I need it everyday now. When the pain of an aging body gets me down; when I let that ever youthful rebellion surface; when the whining turns into a sarcastic pout, or when I just plain don’t walk in the confidence of faithfulness to His WORD.

“And Yeshua spoke again with them and he said: “I AM THE LIVING GOD, The Light of the world. Whoever follows me shall not walk in darkness but shall find the Light of ife.”~Jn 8:12 (Aramaic translation)

Abba is “Behind the clouds…the sun still shining.” Waiting for us to look up. Waiting for us to get tired of the rain – of the darkness – and look behind the clouds where the Son is still shining. Shining bright enough for us to see the next step. Shining bright enough to dry our tears. Shining bright enough to shed Grace over our heavy hearts and grant us peace.

It is the season to reflect. A season of to wonder – to ponder. A season to choose Light over darkness once again. A season to “…go and sin no more.”

“Then Jesus straightened up and asked her, “Woman, where are your accusers? Has no one condemned you?” “No one, Lord,” she answered. “Then neither do I condemn you,” Jesus declared. “Now go and sin no more.”~Jn 8:10-11 Forgiven [Greg Olsen artwork]

CHRISTMAS IMMANUEL (6 Days and Counting)

“Later, the LORD sent this message to King Ahaz: 11“Ask the LORD your God for a sign of confirmation, Ahaz. Make it as difficult as you want—as high as heaven or as deep as the place of the dead.”

Wouldn’t you love to receive that message from Poppa GOD? Just ask – anything – – high as heaven – – – or as deep as the place of dead? Hmmm… A prophecy buried within a prophecy. Even before Isaia got to the main point of his visit, he was hinting at its fulfillment. Gotta love every word of a Bible verse. Father’s words are never wasted.

“But the king refused. “No,” he said, “I will not test the LORD like that.”

And there it is. Yupper! Typical human response. Just put a spin on it, so it doesn’t sound like what it is. R-E-B-E-L-L-I-O-N. It is what we do. GOD reaches out. We push back – just a little – mind you. May not be an open rebellion – or even as brash as King Azah, after all, GOD had told him to ask for a sign. Not Azah, he didn’t need “test” GOD. Yet – here he was – – pushing back – – – rejecting what the LORD had told him to do, never-the-less.

“Then Isaiah said, “Listen well, you royal family of David! Isn’t it enough to exhaust human patience? Must you exhaust the patience of my God as well?”

Can you hear the exasperation in Isaiah’s voice? Can you here him biting back all those words that he wanted to say but couldn’t because he was about the LORD’s work right now? I must really becoming adapted to the South, for I can surely hear these words with just a twinge of a drawl clinging to each word.

“All right then, the Lord himself will give you the sign. Look! The virgin will conceive a child! She will give birth to a son and will call him Immanuel (which means ‘God is with us’). By the time this child is old enough to choose what is right and reject what is wrong, he will be eating yogurt and honey. For before the child is that old, the lands of the two kings you fear so much will both be deserted.”~Is 7:10-16

LOOK!

UNDERSTAND!

The glorious impossible happened just as Isaiah prophesied so long ago. A sign was given. A Virgin. A boy-child.

IMMANUEL.

GOD WITH US.

As high as heaven. Deep as the place of the dead.

YESHUA – GOD who is with us – who saves us – who loves us so much that He sent His son to tear the veil between the high heaven and the deep place of the dead. The Son who stands with us in the highest points of our lives to the lowest points of our lives.

Now that is Christmas! That is the reason I get so excited that it is almost here. The Glorious Impossible of Mary – a mother’s love bringing forth the Father’s sign. Mary - mothers love [Akiane artwork/google image]

CHRISTMAS: GLORIOUS IMPOSSIBLE (9 Days and Counting)

“Possible things are easy to believe. The Glorious Impossibles are what bring joy to our hearts, hope to our lives, songs to our lips.” ~Madeleine L’Engle

After a busy day of putzing here – canoodling there – and just getting a little bit done on each thing on my list, it is nice to just sit – turn off the big lights and sit in the beauty of the Christmas lights. letting the quiet of the night surround me.

We haven’t had a “tree” since our home burned in 2009. It was in September, so our house was still under construction that Christmas. I decorated the basement with a few lights, a tiny fake tree, some garland around the bookcases and windows, and “…it was good”.

Since then, we’ve just fallen into a new tradition. A couple of small “fake” trees (we’re talking 2 feet and under), garland around the windows, a few of nativities, some lighted villages, and the setting for Christmas is complete.

I do miss the smell of pine branches. I miss the brush of the needles through my fingers (since I was little, I’ve always loved running my fingers through the long needles of a white or scotch pine). Most of all, I miss the excitement that getting a “real” tree always seemed to bring with it.

And yet –

The period of Advent always brings that excitement – “real” tree or “fake” tree. Doesn’t matter. Suddenly, the impossibilities of what will come on Christmas Eve still grow in my heart with each day. The joy of watching my loved ones open presents still makes my heart smile. Singing the Christmas songs that I sang as a child and as an adult just curves my lips into this incredibly happy smile – even when the voice cracks or disappears entirely. Best of all, as I gaze at the baby in the manger, hope blooms wildly in my heart.

“Great and marvelous are your works,
O Lord God, the Almighty.
Just and true are your ways,
O King of the nations.
Who will not fear you, Lord,
and glorify your name?
For you alone are holy.
All nations will come and worship before you,
for your righteous deeds have been revealed.”~Rev 15:3-4

His Advent promises are just as true today as they were to Mary and Joseph. For centuries before he came the first time, people debated the prophecies, rolled their eyes, and turned their backs on them. Yet – Mary and Joseph – recognized truth of angels and prophecies in their hearts as “glorious impossible” coming true – not in to a rich family or a grand house surrounded by family – but……in a city far from home – – in a stable – – – with animals – – – -and the dust of the earth blown in their nostrils by the breath of a loving Abba.

A baby in the manger reminds us to continue to believe in those “glorious impossible” because a promise is a promise and a prophecy is truth – even if it doesn’t happen the way we think it might. The truth is – as Advent is here again and as I wait, I get that tingly excitement of hope building up inside of me, and I am jumping up and down, closing my eyes and whispering to My Father that “glorious impossible”:

“Amen! Come, Lord Jesus!”~Rev 22:20b       

51a8X0HGR+L._SX258_BO1,204,203,200_  [google image]

DAYS TO REMEMBER

One of the younger Grands had a “family” b-day today. Her actual b-day is tomorrow when she will – officially – hit the double digits for the first time. Confetti balloons. Slime, slime everywhere. Legos here- there-underfoot. Rose water sprayed and re-sprayed. Robot assembly then robot drawing tablecloth designs. Ribbons on packages – ribbons on ponytails. And – ice cream cake to add even a little more sweetness.

 

Truth be told – these are the days to remember.
 
Remembering is one of the things I love about the Jewish and Christian faith. The Bible is full of stories; timeless stories that tell – the good and the bad – the ugly and the poetic – the historical that reaches into the present and even further into the future.
 
The first day of the Jewish festival Sukkot has just ended. It is a week-long festival (you do gotta love a group that know how to throw a festival that lasts for 7 days – full of joy and food). Days dedicated to remembering – remembering the times spent in the dessert – remembering eating food G-D provided and of living in temporary shelters – remembering their mortal heroes who led them through treacherous times and taught them to pray throughout all their days and years – remembering the Father who is always faithful to answer the tiniest of prayers.
 
“Your WORD is truth.”~Jn 17:17b
 
Abraham, father of the faith, walked out of his tent in the morning – before he opened all the sides of that tent to welcome the world – he bent his knees and welcomed His Father – Abba. Gratitude for waking up – gratitude for the new day – gratitude for the storms that may splash enough water into his boat and scare him beyond what he thought was possible – gratitude for the joy of hearing Abba’s voice – gratitude for a Father that will tell the wind to hush and the seas to be still because HE is always in the boat with with His child. (Matt 7:24-28)
 
Those are days worth remembering.
 
Treasure chest days.
 
Festival days.
 
“Therefore 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.”
 

When Jesus had finished saying these things, the crowds were amazed at his teaching,”~Matt 7:24-28 

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