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How do you build a church? From the bottom up. In the ancient world, you begin with a cornerstone. You make sure that it is level and plumb. Then when you place a block of stone on top, it will also be level and plumb. If you keep doing that, put one rock on top of the other, before you know it, you have a building that is level and plumb. That is because the cornerstone communicates those properties to the rest of the rocks. That is how you build a church. Christ is the cornerstone who communicates His righteousness, His faithfulness, His kindness to all the other members.
Let me tell you a little about farmers in the time of Christ. Farmers were all poor so they did not own land. They had to lease land from rich guys who lived in the city. Of course, the landlords wanted their rent paid. The Romans also wanted a cut for their taxes. On top of that pressure, they had to deal with droughts, floods, insects, and thieves. When you turn to the parable you can understand why the farmers are upset and anxious. However, they deal with all that anger in the wrong way. The parable states that they rejected the cornerstone that could have given them everything they needed to deal with their difficult situation.
One Saturday morning my mother asked me to go shopping with her. As she was driving, she said to me, “You have been very quiet lately. You seem withdrawn, low on energy, and distant. That is not like you. You are always happy and fun, and you helping me out with the chores and having fun with your brothers. I miss the old Peter. I want him back.” I told her that my friend in school betrayed me and embarrassed me in front of all my classmates. She said, “Do you know what your friend is doing now? He is probably at the mall eating pizza and having a good time, while you are here being miserable.” Then she gave me this advice. “Peter, don’t let anyone rob you of your good stuff. Do not let anyone take away the things that make you special.” If my mother were here today she would say, “Do not let the virus, the news networks, the boss, or landlord rob you of your good stuff.”
Here is the faith lesson. Remember we all belong to a church and the reason we belong to a church is because it has a cornerstone. A cornerstone that can give you everything you need to live the most fulfilled life; the life you want to live. Do not be like the tenant farmers, do not ever separate yourself from your cornerstone.Back to All Homilies