When I was a kid my family went on vacation one summer in California. When we got to the beach, I did what every boy must do. I set out to build a sand castle that would put all other sand castles to shame.

sand castles

For hours I hand crafted a masterpiece. There were moats, towers, drawbridges… everything a boy could ever want in a castle. I was Michelangelo and this was my Sistine Chapel. It was perfect. I couldn’t wait to show Mom and Dad.

But what I didn’t know as a kid is that there is this thing called the tide.

As I built my castle, the ocean was creeping in. And just as I finished the castle, a monster of a wave came from nowhere knocking me to the ground and completely obliterating everything I spent hours to build.

I cried. My brother laughed. And I am still scarred by that moment today.

But here is the thing that I have realized.

Most of us live our lives like kids building sand castles on the beach.

We give our lives to building things that will not last: successful careers, big houses, fast cars, and large bank accounts… the American dream.

We spend out lives chasing these things – building our castle.

But here is the BIG PROBLEM: all these things are temporary. They won’t last! We can’t take any of it with us when we die.

Death is like the big wave to our little sand castle. It will wipe everything we do away. All of it will be meaningless. No amount of money, power, or fame can stop it. And last I checked, the statistics on death still say that it affects 1 out of 1 humans.

Now that you are all depressed, let me give you some hope.

There are two things that will last forever: God’s kingdom and His people.

Jesus said it this way:

“Therefore everyone who hears these words of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house on the rock. The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house; yet it did not fall, because it had its foundation on the rock. But everyone who hears these words of mine and does not put them into practice is like a foolish man who built his house on sand. The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house, and it fell with a great crash.”
– Matthew 7:24-27

People who ignore what the Bible says live for themselves. They follow their own selfish nature and build their sand castles. But Jesus promises that those who hear his words and do what he says will build something greater. Something that will last forever.

So here is the question I want to ask all of you: What if we stopped building our temporary castles, and started building God’s eternal kingdom? What if we lived our lives focused on eternity?

If you were brave enough to go against the crowd and actually do this, what in your life would change?