Sinking Sands Syndrome and the Search for Foundations

My life is a search of foundations. A firm base to land on when life gets out of control. A rock-solid-ballast when the tides of uncertainty, fear, pain, and doubt pummel me to the ground.

We all are in search of foundations that’ll hold in the rocky waters in the boat of life. 

This week I had the privilege of spending time with a group of brothers who know something about foundations. A network of pastors who serve churches in middle America and the south. 

A brotherhood dealing in the proclamation of solid foundations. Prayerfully, humbly, and relentlessly pointing people to a sure foundation of history altering proportions. An eternal foundation satisfactory for whatever storms life throws at ordinary saints. 

But what I know about these brothers, and what I know of myself (and continue to learn) is we often forsake the sure footing guaranteed to hold. Our telling others about the foundations of all foundations is often the one we ignore in search for different security, ground, and safety. 

We struggle with Sinking-Sands-Syndrome.

One of my favorite songs the church has sung for almost two hundred years is “The Solid Rock.” The chorus is simple and a perfect confession for our search of foundations:

“On Christ the Solid Rock I stand all other ground is sinking sand.”

These simple words don’t need a great theological mind for comprehension. A child could sing with ease. We don’t need a professor of Old Testament languages to explain the deeper meaning of the chorus.

Christ is the rock and foundation we need and everything else is sinking sand… blown away with a wind… or destroyed with a rushing tide.

We have Sinking-Sands-Syndrome.

What I was reminded of this week is how hard it’s to stay on the Rock when “sinking sands” are so alluring. I’ve tasted and seen the Lord is good…but there are other competing “goods.”

The sinking sands of theological rightness are lurking at the door. An unhealthy appetite for power and applause for a job well done, more sinking sands. 

A disdain for others who don’t quite fit in my camp and my tribe. A judgment toward others who don’t lead their spouse, kids, and church as well as I do. 

More sinking sands…

My appetites and loves are disordered to the point of laughable proportions. I’ve tasted the righteousness of Christ and there is no need to strive and be good in and of myself. But I do. Christ has crushed my sin on the cross and extended free grace and forgiveness. But I can’t seem to forgive others. Would rather live with rage, bitterness, and anger. 

Sinking sands…

Christ has brought me to the Father and given me every spiritual blessing. I am loved by my Abba, Daddy, and yet, I still need approval from my earthly daddy on a daily basis. 

Sinking sands… 

My past, present, and future is secure in Christ. Yet I live with a crystal ball and assured things will go bad tomorrow. Anxiety and worry lurk in the recesses of my heart.

More sinking sands…

Christ outed me on the cross and all my sin laid bear. But I still wear a mask and refuse to be an open book with all my sin, weakness, and brokenness, before God and others.

Sinking sands…

In the last couple days I’ve been confronted with my humanness. The old and new man still butting heads with frequent regularity. I’ve been opened up with the gentle scalpel of a loving Father to explore the dark places of my heart. Those corners of darkness and corrosion and resistance. 

We were reminded of the gifts of God. One being this brotherhood. A brotherhood to help me deal with my humanness. I needed gifts of Word, song, bread, cup, food, drink, prayer, and conversation. 

Christ the Solid Rock is what we/I need. I’m in search of foundations for when the bottom falls out and everywhere in between. 

The Sinking-Sands-Syndrome is real. 

Thankful for a brotherhood that calls me out when I make sand castles where the tide is coming.