Friday, November 19, 2010

Foundation Repair as a Case Study

I was at an apartment complex today where they had someone go around to all of the buildings to inspect their foundations. They were built in the late 1980's, so that the buildings could have been structurally sound still. However, they did not have initial piers attached to the concrete slab to prevent movement (which would have been relatively less expensive than adding them later). To make matters worse, the management (not sure who it was then) years and years ago, had a cheapo pier company come out and work around the buildings. The pier company told them nice things, but sold them an inadequate product. You can see these later concrete cut outs along the side and in other places. These cheapo piers are poured concrete and eventually shift easily.

Several of these apartment buildings are on a downward slope, which means the building moves over time. This little fix makes the problem worse, because the ineffective piers are in the places where an effective one should be. At that point, the working around the wrong fix doubles the cost of fixing the problem by working around those virtually faux piers.

A foundation placed on the wrong supports is like a Texas home placed upon clay like soil. When the summer and winter bring shifting, and the ground has a slope the pressure causes problems. These apartments are also near a major railway, where the set of engines with a long train shifts the ground of some of the buildings. The need for a solid foundation could not be more real.

In the same way, self-created religion as an attempt to reach right standing with the eternal and all powerful Lord God is an attempt to fix things. People resort to it in their soul, heart, and mind thinking what they'be built on themselves is enough for what will come. Still the problem remains ultimately unsolved with self-made solutions. Why? Over time the fault lines are revealed in lives, since the supports are highly limited apart from the work of the Sovereign God by the Holy Spirit changing our hearts and minds towards Christlikeness (i.e. with what we'll face before God it is not enough to make something up.).

Using cheapo piers as the foundation to your very house is like adding religion to your life to prop up something with a core root problem (such as a big, water stealing tree near your pad). Just put something in there that sounds good and see how it turns out. Sure enough, later on, the unapproved fix is going to be even more expensive to get out of. Ultimately, we needed Jesus to come as the Savior and Lord so as to restore us, by removing our false supports (man made religion) and installing sure piers (Himself as the rock of our life). Turning to Jesus is like setting your life on something immovable. When time passes, your faith will remain. The alternative structures made by people will pass away over time.

Ephesians 2:19-21 says in part: "you are... fellow citizens with God's people and also members of his own household, built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, with Christ Jesus Himself being as the chief cornerstone. In him the whole building is joined together and rises to become a holy temple in the Lord." It is through Jesus Christ that we are right before God, and free to live today without shifting, massive cracks, and then a cave in....

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