Enter through the narrow gate. For wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it. But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it. Matt 7:13-14
Some days I think one of the hardest parts about being a Christian is trying to be like Jesus. It’s fairly easy when I’m at home alone. I can spend quiet time with him, meditating on his word and in prayer. But when I go out into the world it becomes difficult.
For example, the other day I had one task; I needed to drive my husband home from the doctor because he’d be going under anesthesia. He drove us to the appointment and we were laughing when suddenly we got caught up in a road rage incident. He’d seen a driver coming up fast in the rear view mirror – the true definition of a “speed demon.” But he wasn’t just speeding, he was cutting people off, driving aggressively and giving everyone the finger.
He raced up and began tailgating us. We were in traffic so we just stayed in our lane. To be honest, my husband wasn’t in any wild hurry to move over for him. So the guy speeds around us on the shoulder, and brake checks us. We slammed on our brakes and then . . . it was on. He flipped us off, my husband responded in kind and then we switched lanes. This maniac accelerated and positioned his car so that he was perfectly in the middle of both our lanes!
It was terrifying and dangerous. As a side note, my husband races supercars on a track, so he was in complete control. Not me. I yelled at him to get away from the guy but he ignored me because the man was challenging him to pull over onto the shoulder. All I could picture in my head was a huge fight on the side of the road with someone getting hurt.
I yelled louder, but they both pulled over anyway and opened their doors. When the guy was almost fully out of his car, my husband speeded around him and drove away. You’d think it would have ended there, but no. The man raced up behind us again and chased us for a mile until we came to our exit. It was only then that he decided to continue on the highway as we exited onto a side road.
The world is full of jerks — entitled people who crave conflict and cause trouble. It’s hard not to engage and become like them, but we must resist the temptation.
Jesus warned his followers about the way they should go. Our conduct matters to him because we represent him. We’re to produce good works and make the world a better place. On his journey to Jerusalem he went through towns and villages teaching about the kingdom of heaven. People were curious. They wanted to know what it was like and who’d be invited in…
Someone asked him, “Lord, are only a few people going to be saved?” He said, “Make every effort to enter through the narrow door, because many, I tell you, will try to enter and will not be able to.” Luke 13:23-24
He explained (in a parable) that those who would enter would be those who knew him, who had more than a casual relationship with him. It’s not enough to just call ourselves Christians or try to perform works and practice religious activity. We need to be in an intimate relationship with him.
God is wonderful and faithful. He gave us the gift of his own son so that we could pattern our lives after him. If we follow in that way we’re certainly headed in the right direction.
When we read the entire chapter of Luke 13 we find that Jesus is speaking to the people about repentance as the way to enter the kingdom of heaven. He uses the imagery of the two roads and the doors.
Remember, Jesus controls the door — he decides who enters his kingdom.
Best of all, that road and that door takes you right to Jesus and a much better place.