Soon after the fire, the restoration company began removing the contents of the house. And in doing so, they took out everything. This prevented further smoke damage to any salvageable items. It also provided space for the team to work. Pulling up carpet, patching drywall, and scrubbing the walls is much easier when you’re in an empty room.

They also cleared out the garage. But unlike the house, the fire had so damaged the rest of the structure that it couldn’t be re-used. It all had to come down. So immediately after removing what was on the inside, the crew demolished the whole thing. The concrete slab and the foundation walls around the perimeter were the only things that survived. Fortunately, there was no need to re-dig and re-pour the foundation itself. It was solid, and rebuilding could commence as soon as everything else was cleared away.

Foundations are not always visible and may be easy to overlook. But it’s hard to overestimate their importance. A strong foundation provides stability to everything built upon it; a weak foundation compromises everything it undergirds.

Foundations also take a variety of forms. There is the typical concrete foundation that supports a building. But they are present in other areas as well. A sport or craft, for instance, has certain “foundational” skills that are necessary to succeed. They are the “foundation” an athlete or craftsman builds upon in his chosen field. The same is true of your health and career. Your health is undergirded by your food and exercise choices; your career by your skills and relationships.

Now, a strong foundation may not be able to prevent disasters or setbacks from happening. But they can provide support and stability during those times. And even in the times where it feels like you have to start over, having a solid foundation means you won’t have to re-dig and re-pour the whole thing.

Questions: What kind of foundations do you have in life—physically, spiritually, professionally, socially? Are they providing stability to everything else? Are they solid enough to continue to build upon? Would they survive in the middle of a crisis?