Read: Ephesians 6:1-9, Ps. 145:10-14, Luke 13:22-30“Strive to enter by the narrow door; for many, I tell you, will seek to enter and will not be able.” (Luke 13:24)
Jesus was asked if there would only be a few to attain eternal life. He did not answer that question rather he tells us what we must do to achieve it. Heaven is not for a selected few, it is for all those and anyone who makes effort to enter by the narrow door.
The narrow door represents sincere and genuine worshippers of God who will never indulge in iniquity even in secret, Christians who walk the talk; Christians who know how to forgive; Christians whose lives (more than their words), proclaim God loudly to the world; Christians who remain steadfast even in the face of difficulty.
Ironically, rather than following the narrow path with all its difficulties, we keep praying to God to widen the path, that is, to make the road easier and less stressful. The good news is that the narrow door is not restricted to Christians. In fact, while many Christians miss it, “many will come from east and west, and from north and south, and sit at the table in the kingdom of God.” (Luke 13:29).
Think about this. There are some persons you have judged already and condemned in your heart that they cannot enter heaven. Wouldn’t it be a shame that these persons would eventually enter paradise while you are sent away? It is better not to be a Christian at all than to be a bad one.
It is not surprising that many are openly rejecting the faith today and even burning the Bible. Many are disappointed with the Christian faith not because they hate Christ but because they cannot stand the hypocrisy of persons who claim to be followers of Christ. Stop being a disgrace to the faith. Let your light shine.
St. Paul in today’s first reading reminds us of the fourth commandment saying that it comes with a promise: “that it may be well with you and that you may live long on the earth.” (Ephesians 6:3). Honouring your parents (elders) is not only cultural, it is also spiritual. If you don’t respect old age, you might not live even to experience it. The manner you treat older people is the same way you will be treated in old age.
Surely, even our elders can make it very hard for us to honour them in old age. They may become difficult, proud, stingy or heartless. No wonder St. Paul was quick to add: “Fathers, do not provoke your children to anger… masters, act with forbearance, show no partiality.” Respect begets respect. Love your children. Avoid cursing them in anger lest your curses backfire; that is, prevent your children from making it in life and thereby make them unable to help you in old age.
No matter how difficult it may be to love and honour your parents (and elders), bear in mind that it is part of what it means to follow the narrow door that leads to eternal salvation. Are you a slave (servant, apprentice, student, employee etc.), honour your elders and bosses even if they don’t deserve it. Someday, people will bow for you.
Let us pray: Heavenly Father, help us be good children and good parents. Through Christ our Lord. Amen.
Be Happy. Live Positive. Have Faith. It is well with you. God bless you. (Wednesday of week 30 in Ordinary Time. Bible Study: Ephesians 6:1-9, Ps. 145:10-14, Luke 13:22-30)
© Rev. Fr. Evaristus Abu