Posted on: August 9th, 2023 Protected: The Sun & the God Trunk: a Community “By Which”

This content is password protected. To view it please enter your password below:

Filed under: Uncategorized | Comments Off on Protected: The Sun & the God Trunk: a Community “By Which”

Posted on: August 1st, 2023 The Narrow Way

“Enter by the narrow gate; for wide is the gate and broad is the way that leads to destruction, and there are many who go in by it. Because narrow is the gate and difficult is the way which leads to life, and there are few who find it.” Matthew 7:13-14.

As a recovering evangelical/fundamentalist, it is so easy for me to hear this passage as saying, “The majority of the human race is going to hell; a few elect folks, however, will make it down the narrow path to salvation.”

Yet, what if Jesus has something else in mind? Granted, the passage itself does explicitly make a statement about “numbers.” But it can also be read with a different emphasis. This narrow gate, this difficult and treacherous way: what if it is something like the pilgrimage of those Hobbits as they make their way, in The Lord of the Rings, from the Shire to their ultimate destination (Mordor, where the ring will finally be destroyed)?

Time and time again in that story, the weak, fearful little Hobbits are making their way along a steep, rocky mountain trail, or through a dark wood densly packed with Orcs and all manner of evil creatures, or though a boggy marsh populated by the dead.

Truly, the “way” or the path of these pilgrims is difficult. Oftentimes it is literally quite narrow. At a non-literal level, it is “narrow” in the sense that their odds of success are quite slim indeed.

But they pass along that winding, dangerous path. They do indeed, time and time again, choose to walk through the “narrow gate.”

For me, this reminds me so very much of my life, my ministry, my family, my parish, my own journey to find “salvation,” or the integral shalom of God.

So often, the way seems treacherous. The odds of “success” are apparently scant. Any vision of a victorious outcome is well-nigh impossible. And yet, Christ beckons us down precisely this road, this narrow pathway.

The point is not about numbers, quantities of people who will perish or succeed. The point is about the treacherous narrowness of the path itself, and about how the Lord delights in our Hobbit-like efforts courageously to put one foot in front of the other, journeying toward the light, in hopes not simply of “victory” or “success,” but that Christ will see us through (much like Gandalf in LOTR often swoops in and “saves the day”).

Share Button

Filed under: Uncategorized | Comments Off on The Narrow Way