A Sure Foundation

    “A Sure Foundation,” New Era, Jan. 2012, 10–11

    A Sure Foundation

    My dad taught us a valuable lesson in a house that didn’t exist yet.

    As I stepped over the concrete and rebar jutting out of the ground, I thought this had to be the strangest family home evening ever. Mom and Dad had loaded all five of us kids into the van and driven us to where our future home was being built. We were excited about our new house and often visited the site to see the progress.

    At this stage, however, the progress wasn’t very exciting—just long rows of poured cement that looked more like buried walls with iron rebar running through them.

    “Sit down,” Dad said, and we all looked around to find a comfortable spot to sit. “This is the foundation of our house,” he explained. “Our home will be supported by all of this concrete and metal. This foundation will keep our house safe during storms. It will even keep our house standing strong during an earthquake.”

    This got my attention. Living in California, we were all used to earthquakes, both big and small. We’d seen what earthquakes could do to homes.

    “Normally, builders don’t make foundations go this deep into the ground for a house this size,” my dad gestured into the trench holding the underground concrete. “And once the house is built, we won’t even see it. Some people told me I was wasting money to build a deep foundation for our home, but I wanted to make sure our home was as safe as I could make it.”

    The building of our home was a big part of our lives, but my dad had taken to talking about it at every opportunity. Now he was giving us a family home evening lesson on overbuilt slabs of concrete and iron that no one would ever see after a few more weeks.

    Of course, Dad wasn’t done with his lesson.

    “There is another kind of foundation we need to build as well.” We all looked at him expectantly. “Each of us needs as his or her own foundation a testimony of our Savior, Jesus Christ. Just like our home’s foundation will keep us physically safe during storms and earthquakes, a testimony will keep us spiritually safe when we face trials and challenges.”

    Dad continued, “I challenge each of you to build strong foundations by learning about our Savior and praying for help and ways to know Him better. Follow His example and keep His commandments, and you will be blessed with a strong testimony of Him.”

    Since that family home evening lesson, set amid the crucial beginnings of our new home, I have learned just how important it is to have a strong, deep testimony of Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ as my own personal foundation. When adversity comes, I can always rely on what I know to be true. My testimony keeps me strong and makes it possible for me to weather the many storms of life.

    Illustrations by Pat Gerber