Psalm 56:3-4 (MSG)
56 1-4 Take my side, God—I’m getting kicked around, stomped on every day. Not a day goes by but somebody beats me up; They make it their duty to beat me up. When I get really afraid I come to you in trust. I’m proud to praise God;
fearless now, I trust in God. What can mere mortals do?
Luke 13:22-30 (ESV)
22 He went on his way through towns and villages, teaching and journeying toward Jerusalem. 23 And someone said to him, “Lord, will those who are saved be few?” And he said to them, 24 “Strive to enter through the narrow door. For many, I tell you, will seek to enter and will not be able. 25 When once the master of the house has risen and shut the door, and you begin to stand outside and to knock at the door, saying, ‘Lord, open to us,’ then he will answer you, ‘I do not know where you come from.’ 26 Then you will begin to say, ‘We ate and drank in your presence, and you taught in our streets.’ 27 But he will say, ‘I tell you, I do not know where you come from. Depart from me, all you workers of evil!’ 28 In that place there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth, when you see Abraham and Isaac and Jacob and all the prophets in the kingdom of God but you yourselves cast out. 29 And people will come from east and west, and from north and south, and recline at table in the kingdom of God. 30 And behold, some are last who will be first, and some are first who will be last.”
Sometimes life just kicks you where it hurts and I know for me personally, I don’t always get why. Sure, growth opportunities, times to be stretched, times to be molded, times to be challenged. It’s at those times though that I just want to be left alone. So, what’s the purpose?
We have a narrow path to walk.* Strive we’re told, and we can’t do that unless we’re fearlessly trusting God to protect us. At some point, there are going to be a lot of folks beating at the door saying “let me in!!!!!!!!!!” and God’s going to say “who are you?”. Think about the words “but you cast yourself out”.
What can mere mortals do to us? Nothing but hasten our reunion with God. What can we do? We can refuse to take the molding that God is giving us, refuse to take the path He is showing us, refuse to heed The Way, refuse to acknowledge and embrace The Truth and thereby ensure we’re on the outside looking in.
The Way home is a clearly marked path, long, with lots of distractions – enticing distractions. Come to the Lord in trust, seek the narrow path, strive for the narrow door, serve like Christ served us. Radically alter the lives of those who are opposed by radically altering the lives of those who are oppressed.
*If you haven’t done so, read Pilgrim’s Progress by John Bunyan (there is a “modern” English version too that’s a little easier to read). It’s a great walk down the narrow path and it used to be one of the two most read books in the US – the Bible being the other.