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Foundation Issues

Posted by on April 8, 2015

foundation crackHouse-hunting has given me a new understanding of the importance of foundations. Our rental house shows several cracks in the brick siding that indicate the foundation is shifting. While the slab itself appears to be intact, sitting at our kitchen table gives one a slight sense that the floor is sloping toward the back yard.

Most of the houses in our neighborhood have foundation problems. Many are built on a bluff that overlooks the lake. Expensive houses, expensive property, but if you look at the bluff, you’ll see evidence of ground movement toward the lake. That doesn’t bode well for the foundations. Or the houses.

Last weekend, we looked at a house that had serious foundation problems. The whole time I was inside, I felt off-balance. And yet, the owner was fixing up the inside of the house with new counters and sink and other features in an effort to sell it.

That’s not the first time we’ve seen that. Another house in a nearby neighborhood had been updated beautifully inside. It sat on a high corner lot and boasted a large back yard with a pool. The seller had given the old brown brick a new coat of white paint. With its white pillars in front, the house looked rather majestic. Despite the stunning appearance, we learned later it was a foreclosure and had foundation problems–which hadn’t been fixed. All that beautiful updating—counters, windows, roof, flooring—was wasted, because any effort to shore up the foundation would impact every one of those updates. The paint job may have been for aesthetics, but we suspect it also covered the telltale cracks in the brick.

It makes no sense. Why fancy up the house while ignoring such a basic problem, something that will affect everything else?

Then I thought, how often are we like that? I know I am. I try to fix that expanding waistline with more time at the gym. But what I really need is to adjust my attitude toward sweets and junk food. My foundational belief is tilted, so even if I lose a few pounds now, that faulty attitude will creep back in and mess up all my past efforts.

That goes for more serious issues, too, like resentment, anger, greed, jealousy, pride and any number of other problems. We can cover up our shortcomings for a time. But if we don’t deal with the foundational issues that started it all, in time the cracks will show up and expose our lie, negatively affecting relationships, self-image, confidence and even our relationship with God.

Do you have foundation problems? Have you ever felt like God was waiting to catch you doing something wrong so He could punish you? That’s a foundation issue.

Do you think He’d never forgive you for what you’ve done? That’s a foundation issue.

Feel like He’s abandoned you? Check your foundation.

Do you wonder if He really loves you and cares about you? That’s definitely a foundation problem.

What we believe affects the way we live and interact with others. If we’re believing a lie—usually because of some past hurt—then our foundation is shifting or maybe even cracked.

How to fix it? Read the Bible. Trust what God says there. Make it the rock on which you build your foundation. It won’t shift or cause cracks. But if your life feels off-balance and cracks are showing up around you, it’s likely you’ve got foundation issues.


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8 Responses to Foundation Issues

  1. Jessica White

    We are wrestling with whether to walk away from a home that we’ve put 15k in renovations (windows, insulation, floors, and foundation work) because it now needs another 18k in foundation repairs that will require moving out and removing all the floors we put in last year. The house is only worth 100k.

    But every time I take it before the Lord, I’m reminded God doesn’t walk away. That with Him there is always a way. No matter how broken, messed up we are we are never beyond His repair. So with the plumbing breaking, the walls cracking, the outside slowly seeping in undoing all the work we’ve already done, I put my trust in the fact nothing is beyond His ability.

    • Mary Hamilton

      Oh, Jessica, that hurts!! I’m so sorry. We’ve learned to check on the foundation first as we look for a house. Usually, it’s not a once-and-done thing. If the ground is unstable enough to affect the foundation, the ground will continue to be unstable and the house will continue to need foundation repair. I admire your faith, but this sounds like a “Judas” house! I pray for wisdom for you. That’s a really tough decision!

  2. debgarland

    What a thought-provoking post regarding spiritual and physical foundations, Mary. I remember repainting the kitchen cabinets of our fixer-upper and then replacing both the foundation and those cabinets not many years later. Would we do it again? Not likely. But we did learn valuable lessons from the experience.

  3. Peggy Wirgau

    Excellent, Mary! Every day there seems to be more tragedy in the world and in the lives of people we know. The only way to deal with it is remembering our foundation is Christ, He’s in control, and it’s Him we can run to for strength.

  4. juliebcosgrove

    Very good analogy. Tweeted it and shared on FB

I welcome your thoughts on this.