Thursday, September 29, 2011

Wide Highway or Narrow Road?

Earlier this summer, Mr. H and I went on a trip to Birmingham.  It was my first road trip riding my own bike instead of just riding behind him on his bike.  One of the first things I wanted was a map.  Yes, I was following Mr. H, but what if we got separated just before a critical turn?  I wanted to know what road I needed to be on to get where I needed to go.

Because here’s the deal:  If you don’t care where you end up, it doesn't matter what road you’re on.  But if you have a destination in mind, you need to be on a road that will get you to that place.

Matthew 7:13-14    “You can enter God’s Kingdom only through the narrow gate. The highway to hell is broad, and its gate is wide for the many who choose that way. But the gateway to life is very narrow and the road is difficult, and only a few ever find it.

Let’s look at a map.

You see Lucedale over on the Mississippi side and Mobile is at the bottom of the yellow line.  Birmingham is in that knot of yellow up at the top.  Looking at this map, you’d think the best way to get where I want to go is to get on I-65 and just keep going until I get there. Or maybe over to I-59 and then I-20 over to Birmingham.  But that’s about it. 

Those big fat yellow lines look so inviting.  They go right where I want to go, right?  The fatter the line, the more lanes on the highway.  Don’t have to worry about missing turns.  The speed limit is usually higher so you can go faster without breaking the law.

But what about real life?  I mean, it’s not really a big fat yellow line painted on the ground.  It’s a highway.

It’s a broad highway!
Wow!  Look how easy it is to get around.
Think about the speed you’re traveling.
Could I take that exit if I needed to?  How would I get over there?

Looks like I’m going right where I need to be going!  This is actually I-65. Several years ago we were headed north toward Birmingham and saw this backup on the southbound side.

Remember verse 13:  'its gate is wide for the many who choose that way.'  Looks like the entire world chose that way.  And they are going nowhere fast! 

The world is like that.  People see everyone else on a big expensive road and think all those guys know where they’re going.  But, really, they’re just following the guy in front of them, who’s following the guy in front of him.  Some are just going around in circles and don’t even know it. 

Let’s go back and look closer at the map. 

These little roads didn’t even show up on that first map!  We had to go looking for them.

You can miss so much when you don’t look closely.  Yes, these roads are smaller, fewer lanes, but there are other advantages.  What do you get to see from the broad highway?  Not much!! 

The smaller roads seem winding, but sometimes they are avoiding obstacles. 

Sometimes they are respecting other people’s property lines.

There is usually something interesting to see along the way.

Or a great place to stop and rest.

Or maybe just the view is breathtaking.

It’s the same way on the road to God’s Kingdom.

There’s that broad highway that most people think leads to where they want to go.  It’s filled with people going around in circles and getting nowhere fast.  That is the road to Hell.
Then there’s that narrow road.  It’s the road that Jesus blazed for us.  Sometimes it seems winding – it’s leading us around obstacles.  It is respecting the boundaries of others.  It leads us to the things He wants us to see, to the people he wants us to meet, it causes us to use skills that He wants us to practice.

We would miss all those things on that noisy, wide highway to nowhere. 

But there they are, on a narrow, rough road that leads directly to Him.

So which road will you choose?

1 comment:

  1. The community is like that. Individuals see everyone else on a big costly street and think all those men know where they are going. But, really, they are just following the guy in entrance of them, that is following the guy in entrance of him.