Reflection by Cynthia Brewer
Today’s Gospel: Luke 13:22-30 – 21st Sunday in Ordinary Time
How disappointed I would be if I assumed that I would be let into the Kingdom, only to hear the words, “I do not know where you are from. Depart from me!”
This was part of the response Jesus gave when asked if only a few would be saved. He also stressed that we should strive to go through the narrow gate.
The wide gate is the easy gate, the gate chosen by those who assume that since they know of Jesus, they will be saved. But it’s not enough to know about Jesus; we must know Him! And to know Him is to imitate Him, taking His narrow, difficult way – not the easy way.
He finishes this Gospel message with the statement that some of the last will be first, and some of the first will be last. Does this seem fair?
Maybe not, but think of so many of Jesus’ messages that turn principles on their heads. The workers chosen to work in the vineyard last received the same wage as those who worked all day (Mt. 20:1-16). Jesus welcomed the outcasts, not the well-to-do; “Those who are well do not need a physician, but the sick do,” was Jesus’ reply to those who grumbled that Jesus ate with sinners (Mt. 9:9-13). And then, His famous Beatitudes: “Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven,” and so on (Mt. 5:3-12).
If we choose to follow the world, rather than Jesus, we may end up on our heads — or outside the door knocking. But if we choose the narrow gate – His way — we will be safe!
Jesus’ way always went against the tide, and if that means going in the opposite direction of the secular world, we will be blessed and saved.
How many times have you felt you were last, only to realize Jesus was pulling you up to the front of the line?
Sometimes it’s so hard to keep with the straight and narrow when the world offers so many shortcuts. Jesus, please help me to always keep my eyes on You and choose Your way.
Copyright 2019 Cynthia Brewer
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