Wednesday, March 22, 2017

The Commands of Jesus: Walk It

Many of the commands  Jesus gave us require us to think before we act. There's a reason for that. And the reason is . . . us. We humans always tend to "react" rather than respond like we should. Road rage is a perfect example of what I'm writing about today.

Have you ever slowed down when somebody was tailgating you? Just to annoy them? I have. How about when the freeway is narrowing down to one lane up ahead and "that one guy" tries to pass as many cars as he can before he gets to the encroaching orange barrels. Do you speed up so he can't get ahead of you? Guilty. I'd like to say I don't do that anymore since placing my faith in Christ, but I still do.

That speaks to our inherent human nature to sin. If we would only THINK before we react.

The verse that follows is known as The Golden Rule - do unto others as you would have them do unto you.

"12 Therefore, whatever you want men to do to you, do also to them, for this is the Law and the Prophets." - Matthew 7:12

That's an amazing command and one, if we all followed it, would be living on an incredibly peaceful planet. Do we don't follow it so we fight, we war, we rage.

I'd like you to keep reading after verse 12 for a bit. We hear another command from Jesus. It is very similar to the first one we just read only it comes with help. And a warning.

13 “Enter through the narrow gate. For wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it. 14 But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it." - Matthew 7:13-14

Read both of those passages together (which is how they appear in the Bible).

I think Jesus is trying to tell us something here. That the nice things we "do unto others" are very difficult things to do. A very narrow road. Yet, we are commanded to walk it. We are commanded, but not many will be able to do it.

So how can we do it? How can we stay on the narrow road when our thoughts are on everything happening around us? The key I think is to not focus on the path, but rather, the destination. The path is just the means to get there. Block out everything else.

The next time someone cuts you off on the road, instead of getting mad, focus on your destination. We are all on a road to go some place. That's why we are on the road. Our purpose is to stay on the road and to arrive at our destination. Next time, take the road that has less cars on it and your journey will be much more enjoyable . . . and successful!

TWO roads diverged in a yellow wood, 
And sorry I could not travel both 
And be one traveler, long I stood 
And looked down one as far as I could 
To where it bent in the undergrowth;
Then took the other, as just as fair, 
And having perhaps the better claim, 
Because it was grassy and wanted wear; 
Though as for that the passing there 
Had worn them really about the same,
And both that morning equally lay 
In leaves no step had trodden black. 
Oh, I kept the first for another day! 
Yet knowing how way leads on to way, 
I doubted if I should ever come back.
I shall be telling this with a sigh 
Somewhere ages and ages hence: 
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I— 
I took the one less traveled by, 
And that has made all the difference.

- Robert Frost, 1920

The Road Less Traveled - George Strait

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