The Narrow Gate
Matthew 7: 13 “Enter through the narrow gate. For wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it. 14 But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it.”
Recently, I wrote this for a dear friend. It probably rings true for you, too. It certainly does for both David and me. I hope you find this encouraging.
We have entered through the narrow gate. Not everyone goes that way. The other gate is wide and the majority of people go thru that way. It is more obvious. That’s where a lot of people are, so it must be the correct way – right? What I am talking about is not destruction at all, but the intimate “do the stuff” sort of Kingdom thing that many of us long for.
Over there, that wide gate does NOT close behind people as they go through it. People can turn around and go another way. They can go through that narrow gate way over there.
Every time you and I went through that wide gate, something didn’t seem right. We could see another gate, off in the distance – back the way we came. It is really narrow. Who could get through that? But as we strained our eyes to see, we saw people walking around in the pasture there. Hey – they got through. So can we!
So, we turn back.
For me, as I got to the gate, I camped out at the entrance for a long time. I would go through but I would go back out – because it got lonely. It seems like only recently I allowed myself to go through and stay in there!
Once we go through the narrow gate, we look around. Suddenly, we see how very alone we are! Before, when we went through the wide gate – we had lots of people around us, but we weren’t happy or fulfilled.
Now, once through the narrow gate, we are alone and unsure of what to do next. So, we start walking. Alone. Eventually, we come across another person! They “get” us and we are so encouraged! In our attempt to gain understanding we begin to take everything they have to say and put it in our backpacks for later. Then, they move on and once again – we are alone.
But we’ve got these treasures, their words, in our backpacks! We stop moving and enjoy our new treasures. In time, we begin to move again because we are reminded of just how alone we are and how much that person encouraged us.
We meet another person along the way. The same thing happens. They talk and their words turn into treasures. We’ve got more treasures for our journey.
The point is – eventually, we grow comfortable on this narrow path. We enjoy this journey because we know we are NOT alone. Our seemingly isolated state causes us to begin to talk to the One who invited us here. This is His land!
Yes,the path is narrow but it is wide enough for you (and me) and the One. We walk, we talk. We laugh. We run. We sit. We rest. We are asked what we see, feel, hear and know. Oh, and we are asked what is it that we want!
Again – we begin to walk on the narrow path. We look around and He is not there. Where did He go? We momentarily panic at our isolation and aloneness. But we look and here comes one person, who looks lost. We realize they are fairly new here and we go and talk with them. We know the wide gate from which they came. We realize their aloneness and we begin to encourage them.
We bless them and we move on.
As we look back, they are putting treasures into their backpacks. And….we realize….that our own words have turned into treasures for someone else!