Part of our neighbor’s house in Mexico is built of concrete block, and the other part was built of adobe. I use the past tense when referring to the adobe portion of the house, for it is no more. It sustained irreparable damage during the 7.1 magnitude earthquake that hit the central part of Mexico on September 19, 2017.
Adobe bricks are a mixture of mud, clay, and straw and are cast in open molds, then air-dried. It’s one of the oldest building materials and can last for years, but as our neighbors and many others in central Mexico found out, it’s not especially strong.
We build our lives out of a variety of materials, the most important materials not being material in nature at all, but immaterial. The material building materials of life consist of houses, cars, electronics, bank accounts, clothes, and other tangible materials, but these aren’t the most important building products for constructing a great life.
Far more important are such things as faith in God, love, honesty, commitment, patience, integrity, and a host of other immaterial building materials. There’s also a long list of immaterial building materials that are harmful and dangerous to use. This list includes hate, lust, self-serving, racism, greed, apathy, and a host of others.
When building something it’s important to use the right materials, good materials. Our neighbor in Mexico is going to rebuild. He told us he’ll be using concrete block, not adobe! Good choice. We all need to make ongoing choices of what we’ll utilize to build our lives. It’s up to us to make good choices.
The apostle Paul’s words in a letter to the Corinthian Christians: “According to the grace of God given to me, like a skilled master builder I laid a foundation, and someone else is building upon it. Let each one take care how he builds upon it. For no one can lay a foundation other than that which is laid, which is Jesus Christ. Now if anyone builds on the foundation with gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, straw—each one’s work will become manifest, for the Day will disclose it, because it will be revealed by fire, and the fire will test what sort of work each one has done.” 1 Corinthians (3:10-13)