We All Have Baggage

OCTOBER 29

MATTHEW 7:14_strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life…

If we had to be baggage-free to enter the strait gate, there would be no need to enter. After all, we’re already living free so what’s there to gain?

We all have baggage. Bags filled with broken pieces of our hearts, hopes, and dreams. Some baggage we choose of our own free will. Other baggage is inflicted upon us by the circumstances of life. They came with the life package—a life we live in a dark and sinful world every moment of every day.   

The difference in the sizes of our baggage depends upon how we deal with them. The wide gate allows for a lot of baggage. That is why it is wide. The path is broad so we don’t have to drop off any bags. It is the designed path for those who have been subdued by the world—to accept its darkness as if there were no other choice. It is for those who don’t want to check their bags at the gate because the bags contain their pain relievers. Some may be for physical pain, but the majority are for pains of the soul. The spirits of darkness work to keep us depressed and discouraged. Life doesn’t have to be that way—there is hope!  

Colossians 1:27 (KJV), “To whom God would make known what is the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles; which is Christ in you, the hope of glory.”

PRAYER

Lord Who Reigns, Only You can truly relieve the pains of my life. In the powerful name of Jesus, Amen.

Christ is the pain reliever—I will make Him mine!

You Choose

OCTOBER 28

MATTHEW 7:14_strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life…

Roads, trails, paths, streets, highways, all take you somewhere. They all have a beginning and an end. Life is like that. 

There’s another thing about highways, streets, paths, trails, and roads—you choose the ones to take. You choose them based on your destination – the end you desire to reach. Out of all the available roads you choose the one which will reach your destination. If you’re going to church, you pick the road that leads to your church. If you’re going to school, you pick the road to your school. If you’re going to the grocery store, you choose that street. You know where you want to be, and you choose a path to get there.

You also choose spiritual roads. If self-indulgence with the addictions and vices that accompany it is your choice, enter the wide gate. You have room for the baggage you bring. Since this way is broad, you have room to add to the baggage as life goes along. And you will add to the baggage because that is just the nature of how it works.

When you choose the strait gate, you choose to begin to drop baggage. Some of it, Jesus relieves you of at the gate.       

PRAYER

Awesome God, I want to be with You—I choose that way! In the powerful name of Jesus, Amen.

Christ is the way—I choose to follow Him!

Narrow Passages

OCTOBER 27

MATTHEW 7:14_strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life…

My favorite path in Rock City is the Needle’s Eye. As many times as I have been there, it remains my favorite. Two large rock formations are close together but not touching—just barely not touching. As you enter the trail between the rocks, depending upon your size, you may be able to walk normally, moving forward. But as you continue, you come to places where the rocks are closer together. This is when some people have to turn side ways to continue. There are some very narrow passages.

The strait gate, which Jesus says leads to life, is also narrow. The Needle’s Eye leaves very little room for baggage. As you continue to travel the path some of the passages are so narrow if you brought along baggage, you will have to return to the gate and leave it.

Moses’ father-in-law, Jethro, gave him this advice, concerning all the Hebrews he was leading to the promised land, Exodus 18:20 (KJV), “And thou [Moses] shalt teach them ordinances and laws, and shalt shew them the way wherein they must walk, and the work that they must do.”

As a salty-lit-up disciple do the same thing. Give light to the narrow path so seekers can follow it.     

PRAYER

One True God, Help me be light to the strait gate and narrow way! In the powerful name of Jesus, Amen.

Christ casts off my baggage—I’ll follow the narrow way!

Plenty of Room

OCTOBER 24

MATTHEW 7:13_for wide is the gate, and broad is the way, that leads to destruction…

Then there is the second gate. Jesus describes it as wide and broad. You won’t need any help finding that gate. It is wide—how could you miss it? When you reach an accountable age, your eyes are opened to two gates; you’ll see the widest one first. The size makes it visible, and … more tempting. 

Because of its size, you see something else—how easy it is to enter. The wideness allows you to bring all kinds of baggage. 

Not only is the gate wide, but once inside the way is broad. If in the baggage you brought along some pride, there would be plenty of room to add to it—until it becomes arrogance. If you brought just a little bit of a grudge, there would be plenty of room to add to it—until it becomes hate and bitterness.

In Jesus’ words it’s plain – this broad way leads to destruction. Count on it! Psalm 27:11 (KJV), “Teach me thy way, O Lord, and lead me in a plain path, because of mine enemies.”

Make the choice in your youth to enter the strait gate. It will save you numerous regrets in your adult life.          

PRAYER

God Who Saves, Please save me from entering the destructive path of life. In the powerful name of Jesus, Amen.        

Christ saves me from the wide gate—I will follow Him!

A Prerequisite

OCTOBER 23

MATTHEW 7:13_Enter ye in at the strait gate…

Jesus teaches there are two ways to enter this trip called life. Each entrance has a gate. He said to enter at the strait gate. A path designed to lead you to treasure—an abundance of treasures. Treasures only God can give—which make them far more valuable than anything the world offers. Things like: I Timothy 6:6 (KJV), “But godliness with contentment is great gain.” Contentment is one grand treasure! Stop and think for a moment what life would be like if you were content. That means you would be satisfied—not constantly wanting, changing, or re-arranging. It does not mean you shouldn’t ask, seek, or knock for improvements. It simply means you know the peace that comes with being satisfied. 

Notice a requirement prerequisites this kind of contentment—godliness. When you enter at the strait gate, you will find godliness before you find contentment.

Psalm 5:8 (KJV), “Lead me, O Lord, in thy righteousness because of mine enemies; make thy way straight before my face.” 

Psalm 31:3 (KJV), “For thou art my rock and my fortress; therefore for thy name’s sake lead me, and guide me.”

Psalm 25:4 (KJV), “Shew me thy ways, O Lord; teach me thy paths.”

Ask God to help you enter at the strait gate.

PRAYER

Righteous Lord, I don’t know how to find the strait gate, but I can follow You. In the powerful name of Jesus, Amen.                                                                                                 

Christ leads to the strait gate—I will follow Him!