“Strive to enter through the narrow gate, for many, I say to you, will seek to enter and will not be able.” -Luke 13:24
Many times, I find myself being envious of other peoples’ lives. Compared to mine, theirs look so carefree and fun. Their careers seem to be skyrocketing; they have ten boyfriends a month, and they seem to always ‘have it together’! And in the midst of all this, the Lord tells me to enter through the narrow gate!
So, what does that mean? If you’ve ever physically walked through a narrow opening (a lot of older homes in Europe have very narrow doorways!), then you know that feeling of being a tad bit uncomfortable and even on guard to make sure that you actually fit through the entrance.
That’s what our spiritual lives should feel like at times too – because we are not called to live a life of pleasure, worldly luxury, fun, or comfort. We are called to lose our lives and follow Him. To be set apart from the World. To exercise discipline, sacrifice and obedience. To remain small in a world so consumed with material stuff and wealth.
To a lot of young people, reading those words seems like a burden. We want to be young and carefree; to live a little. But, as Solomon wrote thousands of years ago, yes, you can live a cheerful youth and walk in whatever ways your heart and eyes desire, but remember that “God will bring you into judgement” (Ecclesiastes 11:9-10).
We are called to live a set apart life and to walk a narrow path. This calling guarantees that you and your life will stand in stark contrast to how the world around us lives. Daily, we fail the Lord, but we have to remember that trying to enter the narrow gate on our own is next to impossible. We need the Holy Spirit and a relationship with God to help us. He is our shepherd, our Guide, and our Teacher.