Summary: Instructions from Jesus on how to build your life - used on Sunday we honored our graduates

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OPEN: A. In just a few short weeks, the Class of 2008 will be graduating

--We’re glad that each of you are here this morning and that we get the opportunity to honor your


1. You have had some wonderful experiences and will have some lasting memories of your time in

high school

2. Just remember: You have only just begun to build your life

a. It’s important for you to know that the building process in nowhere close to being finished

b. You will spend the rest of your time here on earth continuing to build

c. It’s important that you know how to build your life

--These last twelve years and the next several years are extremely important because this is

where you lay the foundation for building your life

3. Know that this message is not just for you

a. No matter how old we are, we’re still building our lives

b. Each one of us needs to hear and implement the principles in the message this morning

B. Mt. 7:24-29 – “ ‘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.’ When Jesus had finished saying these things,

the crowds were amazed at his teaching, because he taught as one who had authority, and not as

their teachers of the law.”

C. In 1174, the Italian architect Bonnano Pisano began wok on what would become his most

famous project: a separately standing bell tower for the Cathedral of the city of Pisa. The tower

was to be eight stories high. That’s 185 feet tall.

There was just one “little” problem: the builders quickly discovered that the soil was much

softer than they had anticipated, and the foundation was far too shallow to adequately hod the

structure. And sure enough, before long the whole structure had begun to tilt … and it continued to

tilt … until finally the architect and the builders realized that nothing could be done to make the

Leaning Tower of Pisa straight again.

It took 176 years to build the Tower of Pisa and during that time many things were done to try

and compensate for the tilt. The foundation was shored up. The upper levels were even built at an

angle to try to make the top of the tower look straight. Nothing worked. The tower has stood for

over 800 years but there are definitely problems.

Not too long ago, after having been closed for almost a dozen years, the Leaning Tower of Pisa

was finally reopened to the public. During that 12-year-closure, engineers completed a 25 million

dollar renovation project designed to stabilize the tower. They removed 110 tons of dirt, and

reduced its famous lean by about sixteen inches.

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