September 10, 2021 Darren Dalton

Ramblings of a Curate!!

Ramblings of a Curate!!

I'm not sure where I'm going with one, but let's journey together and see where we end up!

I have pondered on;

Matthew 7:13-14. “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.

Another interpretation of the 'narrow gate' is 'strait gate'. Strait is a narrow passage of water connecting two seas or two other large areas of water, such as "the Straits of Gibraltar".

the Origin of the word

This helps me to understand a little more what Jesus meant as narrow. It's not just as simple as narrow is the gate but it is tight and not anyone can fit through it. You need to be a particular shape and size, the gate is designed for those who have been on a disciplined, strict and self sacrificing journey, only then can they fit through it. The journey where we are disciples of Christ being transformed by Him no longer are we our old selves but we are new transformations in Him.

The picture above if you were wondering is from a show called 'A hole in the wall' where there are shapes carved out in the wall and as it comes towards you, you need to adjust your self in order for you to fit through. The game puts the works on the contestants to fit through the narrow hole but in order for us to fit through the 'narrow gate' we need to allow God to do the reshaping and the only way He can do that is if we fully trust in Him and let go of all the other idols we carry.

Proverbs 3:5-6 Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight

When Jesus sent out the twelve disciples first time they did not take anything extra, no money not even a second pair of sandals. They had no option but to fully trust God, as only God can give what we truly need.

We too are on that journey, sent out by Christ to proclaim His good news, the only difference for us is that we hold onto too many idols. Idols that we place before God, idols that we put our trust in, idols that prevent us form meeting on Sunday's and through out the week. As we make excuses after excuses to make ourselves feel better.

The road is narrow and tight, it encourages us, it forces us to get rid of those idols we hold on to if we want to pass through the narrowing of the gate. unfortunately too many people find it more comforting to feel in-control, to do what they want and to live the way they want to, they keep on the wider path as it enables them to hold as many idols as they want.

The narrow path is uncomfortable as we need to be honest with ourselves and with God. The journey is hard, we have to let go of everything and fully trust in God. But through this strict journey we are moulded into the likeness of His son so, when it comes to the gate we will enter. Not because of what we have done but because of the work Christ has done and the Spirit continues to do.

The question I and we need to reflect upon is, what do we need to let go off to allow God to continue to shape us as we journey with Him, and are we willing to put the hard and sacrificial work in and stop making excuses?
Rev'd Darren
St Andrew's Kinson Bournemouth