Fork in the Road

Life is full of choices. Just take a moment and think about how many different decisions you made today. What time to get up? What to wear? What to eat? Each day we are confronted with choices. Some of the choices that we make on a daily basis have very little impact on our lives, such as what and where to eat? Other choices can significantly change the course of our lives. Do we get married? Do we have children? Which career path will I choose?

Of all the choices that we make, the most critical of all is our decision about God and His kingdom. That is the ultimate choice that determines our eternal destiny. All the other important decisions in life hinge on that choice. It is a decision that Jesus calls on us to make. Jesus said, “Enter by the narrow gate. For the gate is wide and the way is easy that leads to destruction, and those who enter by it are many. For the gate is narrow and the way is hard that leads to life, and those who find it are few” (Matthew 7:13-14). In our lives we quickly come to a fork in the road of life. We will be standing at the crossroads where two signs, one pointing to Jesus and eternal life and the other pointing toward a path of destruction. Each of us will have to make our own choice. As we stand at the fork in the road, what will we choose?

As we stand at the crossroads we are confronted by two gates:

The Wide Gate

This gate is wide and easy to enter. Many people will be making the decision to travel this way in life. It is attractive, indulgent, and self-serving. It is tolerant, non-judgmental, and non-offensive. To step through this gate and walk on the easy road requires few if any restrictions or requirements. You can be your own boss, be your own Lord for that matter. Entering this gate will allow you to carry any baggage you want with you. Sin is tolerated. Doctrine is avoided. There is little emphasis on morality and commitment. Those who enter this gate will ridicule those who are squeezing through the other gate. What scares me about the wide gate is that it leads to hell, the sentence of eternal damnation away from God in a burning lake of fire.

The Narrow Gate

This gate is narrow and hard to enter. It is not a popular choice to make. This gate is so narrow that you have to go through it alone. You cannot take anyone else with you. Your husband, your wife, your children, your relatives and friends cannot enter hanging on to your leg. If they would enter they must do so on the basis of their own choice. This gate is also so narrow that you cannot bring your baggage with you. Your sins cannot enter with you. Your pride cannot enter with you. All of your self-accomplishment, influence of money—all of it must be left behind if you are to enter the narrow gate. The rich young ruler discovered this when he wanted to become a disciple of Jesus. He was very wealthy and Jesus told him that before he could enter he had to give some of his possessions to the poor. The young man went away sorrowful. The gate was too narrow for him and his wealth (Matthew 19:16-22).  Choosing to leave everything behind and entering through the narrow gate has tremendous blessings but it is hard. It takes commitment, sacrifice, and devotion to stay on the narrow road. However, this road leads to eternal life. Those who squeeze through this narrow gate will enjoy being in the presence of God for eternity.

Life is all about choices and life is about the freedom to make those choices. God loved us enough to allow us to choose which gate we will enter. When you stand at the fork in the road of life, which gate will you enter?