“If you are in the minority, you are probably doing the right thing.” Advice I have always given to our kids. I am not at all saying that our kids or myself have always chosen the “road less traveled”. And, it is not the only measure I tell them to use, but over the course of my life I have found…it is pretty darn good advice.
Why do I think that??….experience and Scripture. First, take a look at Matthew 7:13, “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.” [emphasis mine]
This Scripture has many applications for our lives….but for this post…I have to just say….that doing the RIGHT thing, many times, leaves you in the minority. It leaves young people, as well as adults at times, feeling excluded, unpopular, lonely. Many times when I have examined the incidents of exclusion–not being included in the tweet, or love group on Facebook, not having likes, or being invited to the weekend getaways, etc.–I have found we have to self-examine or help others stop and take a look at the “traveling pack”, A.K.A. the majority, and, more importantly, the ROAD they are traveling on.
There are many wide roads and their destinations are OFTEN very predictable. We now live in the age of information. There are statistics, many movies, and television “specials” of people who chose the wide road, the “wrong pack” to run with, all of which give an account of where they ended up and why………!
So, why do people take the “WIDE ROAD”? The road that has predictable and heart-breaking destinations. I find many reasons.
1. They are deceived. They have bought into the lie that says, “I am different. This is not going to be where I end up!” Even though history is a great teacher, they refuse (prideful) and are unwilling to take a realistic and serious look at the end of the road they are traveling on. Matthew 7:15 warns…”Watch out for false prophets. They come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ferocious wolves.”
Today, in modern language, it might read, “Watch out for the most popular and most famous. They appear to have all the fun and gain all the fame…but behind the scenes…they are miserable. They have addictions that own them. Their relationships are horrible and superficial but on TV, Twitter, Facebook and Instagram they appear to have it all!” So that is why some people follow and take the wide road. They buy the lie and follow the “popular, famous and, often times, wealthy.
2. Then there are those that know truth…but they REJECT truth (pride). Matthew 7:26, “But everyone who hears these words of mine and does not put them into practice is like a foolish man who built his house on sand. The rain came down, the streams rose and the winds blew and beat against that house, and it fell with a CRASH.”
If the scripture were written today, it would sound like this, “There are opportunities everywhere–books, internet, thousands of churches (no charge for admission), multiple opportunities to know and learn the truth of God’s love. To build a life that is bullet proof from the storms that are guaranteed to come. But they choose instead to build a life of travel, sporting events or hobbies, seeking pleasure, sleeping in on Sunday. Weekly worship and seeking to serve God is not part of their weekly bricks and mortar for life-building.
When 911 hits, or there is an ISIS attack, or an arrest and imprisonment, lost job, terrible diagnosis, or the inappropriate relationship becomes stale…and it will because the animal of desire has been fed with the “new” when the old is familiar…or the gambling debt is elevated and now is too high to pay …… you name your “sandpile”…it doesn’t hold up in the “storm”…and the storms are a guarantee!”
So what do others find on the NARROW PATH? Well, they already know their destination is heaven and eternity. Most who pick the narrow road gain a true understanding that this life on earth is a “mist,” a “vapor,” a “Blink of an eye” compared to eternity.
They come to an understanding as well that how they live their life on this earth determines the “rewards” they will have in eternity. They understand the here and now is nothing compared to “infinity!” They also come to know that they were created with a purpose, God’s great and unique purpose for them, and they seek to find it.
They have to surrender their will to His will. It is a daily faith and trust walk with a Holy God, knowing He can direct their life and choices better than they can. The most important thing is that they realize salvation and living a life in Christ is a “free gift”. You don’t earn it…nor work for it. You just receive it. And, they know that after inviting Jesus into your heart, it is God who takes you down a guided narrow path of “His specific plan for your life.”
God’s desire is for you to live a life that brings love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness and self-control (see Galatians 5:22-23). The Bible is encouraging and gives instructions for building a “profitable” life.…instructions worth knowing. Matthew 6: 20, “But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where thieves do not break in an steal. For where your treasure is there you heart will be also.” Matthew 16:27, “For the Son of Man is going to come in his Father’s glory with his angels, and then he will reward each person according to what he has done.”
There are also some strong warnings worth knowing.
Matthew 12: 33-37, “Make a tree good and its fruit will be good, or make a tree bad and its fruit will be bad, for a tree is recognized by it’s fruit. You brood of vipers, how can you who are evil say anything good? For out of the overflow of the heart the mouth speaks. The good man brings good things out of the good stored up in him, and the evil man brings evil things out of the evil stored up in him. But I tell you that men will have to give an account on the day of judgement for every careless word they have spoken. For by your words you will be acquitted, and by your words you will be condemned.”
Matthew 18:7, “Woe to the world because of the things that cause people to sin. Such things must come, but woe to the man through who they come!”
Romans 14:12-13, “So then, each of us will give an account of himself to God. Therefore let us stop passing judgement on one another. Instead, make up your mind not to put any stumbling block or obstacle in your brother’s way.”
The narrow road is a free gift. We are promised to have God…and His Holy Spirit to guide us every step of the way on this earth…storms and all. This gift is available for everyone. You must know that there are two very different destinations for the WIDE path and the Narrow path. Don’t be deceived about the “WIDE” path that you see many people go down.
IT IS WIDE, PEOPLE….and leads to destruction.
Go down the Narrow Path…with the KNOWN destination. God never said the narrow path would be easy but it is the only one that guarantees the PROMISE KEEPER will be there with you!