“Anyone who listens to my teaching and follows it is wise, like a person who builds a house on solid rock.” – Matthew 7:24 (NLT) In 2017, a man from Chicago named Edward and his family were vacationing in Thailand. As they visited the Cyber Waterfall in the Huai Khot district, Edward and another family friend decided to climb up the rocks and get above the waterfall. There were several signs clearly posted in both English and Thai to not climb on the rocks. They were extremely slippery, and you could easily fall and get hurt. Edward ignored the signs and climbed anyway. After about 20 minutes of climbing, he was near the top. That’s when he slipped and fell over 80 feet to his death. It wasn’t that he didn’t have all the information he needed. He just didn’t heed it. But let’s play that scenario out differently. What if Edward saw the signs and realized they were placed there to protect him? What if he had the wisdom to realize that others had climbed and been hurt and decided he didn’t want to become another statistic? He and his family could have swam, enjoyed a nice little picnic in a beautiful cove, and they could have gone home and enjoyed the experience for years to come. They would have pictures to share, memories to talk about, and Edward could have watched his kids grow up and his grandchildren be born. All he had to do was be smart enough to obey. That’s what Jesus was trying to say to His disciples. It’s nice to hear God’s Word. It’s wonderful to read God’s Word. It’s even wiser to memorize and reflect on God’s Word. But the really important piece is to FOLLOW God’s Word! Jesus said that it’s in the following of His Word that we build our lives on something solid, something strong. God’s Word is meant to show us how to live. It’s there to guide us in the best direction for our lives. It’s meant to PROTECT us. It’s meant to give us steps to take and guardrails to keep us safe. But all that truth only works if you follow it. Jesus went on to say that if we only hear it and then don’t do it, we’re building on the sand. Eventually it’ll all come crashing down. My challenge to you today is not how much Bible do you know, but how much are you actually living by? God loves you. He wants what’s best for you. He wants you to grow old and be happy and healthy and enjoy this life you have. Don’t be like Edward. Don’t just read God’s Word and then go do what you want. Put God’s Word into practice. You’ll build your life and something sure and strong if you do. And you might just get to stick around a little longer to enjoy it. That’s God’s Word for you today.