WHEN we traveled to some of the worst areas of hurricane-damaged Louisiana recently, we saw two kinds of houses: the ones made of wood, and those of brick.
Some wooden houses had been razed to the ground. There was nothing left but a few splinters of lumber. On the other hand, the brick houses in Katrina’s path were gutted, with broken windows and damaged roofs. But the houses stood. Or rather, withstood.
How can a person possibly withstand the forces he meets in this life–the forces of death, of illness, of unemployment, of uncertainty, of hatred, of temptation?
What good is it, my brothers, if someone says he has faith but does not have works? ...faith of itself, if it does not have works, is dead.–James 2:14
Good works are like bricks. Faith is the mortar (what is one without the other?)
The one who builds his life with these, will testify how one can not only survive the painful forces of this life, but even bear them in peace and joy.
Whoever remains in me and I in him will bear much fruit, because without me you can do nothing... If you keep my commandments, you will remain in my love... I have told you this so that my joy may be in you and your joy may be complete.–Jn 15:5, 10-11
Everyone who listens to these words of mine and acts on them will be like a wise man who built his house on a rock. The rain fell, the floods came, and the winds blew and buffeted the house. But it did not collapse....–Mt 7:24-25