The house made more progress yesterday! After getting its footings poured last weekend. It was then prepped just a few days later with large metal boards called forms or “frames”.
We arrived later in the evening in time to see 7 men working diligently to get our entire basement framed. The following day my Dad texted me a photo of a line of cement mixing trucks arriving to pour our foundation walls. When we finally got the chance to drive up to the property, we watched as it took seven men working diligently to lift, hammer and level the large, heavy frames into their proper place.
This was super exciting for us, and it seems like everything is moving along very quickly at this point. We were excited to see that the foundation is going to be much deeper than expected, and that means we will have more storage space under the home than we thought. It also means our home will be higher off the ground giving us a better view.
Although it all seemed to be created quite quickly, it was obvious that this part of the building process involves intense planning, great skill and a lot of hard work to create a very solid, straight, firm foundation which will support our home through any kind of weather or storm, for years and generations to come.
In October 2006 President Thomas S. Monson, then serving as counselor to President Gordon B. Hinckley gave his General Conference talk about Foundations.
“[In] the cold Canadian winters, where storms rage, temperatures can linger well below freezing for weeks at a time, and where icy winds lower those temperatures even further. I asked President Tanner why the roads and highways in western Canada basically remained intact during such winters, showing little or no signs of cracking or breaking, while the road surfaces in many areas where winters are less cold and less severe developed cracks and breaks and potholes.
Said he, “The answer is in the depth of the base of the paving materials. In order for them to remain strong and unbroken, it is necessary to go very deep with the foundation layers. When the foundations are not deep enough, the surfaces cannot withstand the extremes of weather.”
President Monson went on to use this analogy for the importance of making our spiritual foundation deep enough to withstand the extremes of life. He taught us how to do that.
Three Guidelines for Building a Deep Foundation
1. Daily Prayer
As we pray, let us really communicate with our Father in Heaven. It is easy to let our prayers become repetitious, expressing words with little or no thought behind them. When we remember that each of us is literally a spirit son or daughter of God, we will not find it difficult to approach Him in prayer. He knows us; He loves us; He wants what is best for us. Let us pray with sincerity and meaning, offering our thanks and asking for those things we feel we need. Let us listen for His answers, that we may recognize them when they come…
Let us not neglect our family prayers!…That old saying is yet true: “The family that prays together stays together.” By providing an example of prayer to our children, we will also be helping them to begin their own deep foundations of faith and testimonies which they will need throughout their lives.
2. Daily Scripture Study
Let us study the scriptures and “meditate therein day and night,” as counseled by the Lord in the book of Joshua (1:8)…
Spending time each day in scripture study will, without doubt, strengthen our foundations of faith and our testimonies of truth.
3. Serve Others
As [The Savior] enlists us to His cause, He invites us to draw close to Him, and we feel His spirit in our lives.
As we establish a firm foundation for our lives, let us each one remember His precious promise:
Fear not, I am with thee; oh, be not dismayed,
For I am thy God and will still give thee aid.
I’ll strengthen thee, help thee, and cause thee to stand,
Upheld by my righteous, omnipotent hand.
It is so exiting to see the foundation for our new home completed and waiting for the next phase of the building process. In the future as the home is built, we will no longer see the foundation and we will probably not think about it much. It will simply be there- keeping our home solid, sure and firm.
I am thankful for President Monson’s wise counsel of how to build a strong, firm foundation of faith to hold us up.
In conclusion have to share my favorite hymn – set to my favorite arrangement by Mack Wilberg. It is appropriately titled HOW FIRM A FOUNDATION. This hymn has special meaning to me. Several years ago I found myself in another state, thousands of miles away from home, with my daughter lying in critical condition in an unfamiliar hospital. I was away from all my support network of friends and family. I felt completely and utterly alone. One evening the doctor took me aside and told me very bluntly, “you need to prepare yourself. I don’t think your daughter is going to make it through the night.” The burden of my despair and fear was overwhelming. It seemed that my foundation was crumbling right away. After the doctor left, I crumpled down on the floor and cried in prayer, “please help us!”. After a few minutes of weeping and opening up my soul to any kind of sign from heaven – the Lord answered my prayer in a unique way. A song started playing in my mind.
It came into my mind so clearly it was like a radio had turned on. It played over and over again. Especially that final verse, written as if Christ was speaking directly to me:
“Fear not, I am with you – Oh, be not dismayed. For I am Thy God, and will still give Thee aid. I’ll strengthen you, help you, and cause you to stand. Upheld my my righteous, Omnipotent Hand.”
And, He did strengthen me. He helped me to stand up from the floor of that tiny hospital room that night, and stand firm in my soul. I felt a huge weight being lifted off of me. I felt that I didn’t have to worry. Everything was in His hands, and I just needed to trust Him.
As the days and weeks went by, and we endured many more medical ups and down and nights we didn’t know what the morning would bring. There were many more moments of desperation and miracles. And through it all, the song would always return to my mind. Any time I was starting to feel panic and worry, or my faith and hope started to falter, I would hear these words in my mind.
No matter what trials or fears or anguish you may be facing today, I know that you are not alone. Your Heavenly Father is there for you, just as He was for me. He will be your support. Lean on Him. Pray to Him. Study His words. Listen for His unique message to you. Reach out and do something kind for others, which will fill your soul with God’s light.
He will not forsake you. He will be your support, your strength, and your firm foundation. – MoSop