The Narrow Door (Luke 13:24-30)
“Make every effort to enter through the narrow door, because many, I tell you, will try to enter and will not be able to.” Luke 13:24
There are some Bible verses that take some time of a person’s life to wonder and ponder for himself. Luke 13:24 was one of them for me. How does “make every effort” looks like? What is the “narrow door”? Why is it “narrow?”
Learnt from a pastor when I first became a Christian to read through the Bible at least once a year. It is interesting also for me to place a “?” next to the verse(s) that I don’t understand or know its application for God to open my eyes and heart, to read, understand and apply it. Somehow God always answer those that I had “?” along the years. It was a “?” I asked a lot in the last few years and God took me through a journey to realise the reality and finality of death.
My wife and I began to volunteer at the hospital after Jenny recovered from a benign brain tumour in 2011. We share our testimony and the gospel freely and openly with everyone we met on how God completely removed her 5.6 x 4.3 x 4.3 cm tumour and brought us through her 7 months convalescence. We will it as our way of reaching out to other hospital volunteers and people around us. Surely God showed His grace and love for Jenny by healing her (and a lot of mercy for Ben!!) for a purpose and reason. We want to use the bonus time and grace given us to learn to live making every effort in knowing the Word of God, in prayer and intercession, outreach and discipleship.
A Hungarian volunteer shared with her husband our testimony and gospel as we shared with her while going about mundane ” non-critical, non-clinical” caring work of greeting, talking, getting fresh flowers, pillows, making coffee or tea etc for the patients through the wards.
Then one day 6 weeks ago (April 2015), her husband wrote to us that she was diagnosed with a brain tumour at the same spot and about the same size as Jenny. Surgery was immediate but the surgeon pronounced the tumour to be malignant and aggressive (GBM). He told us that she would have at most 2-6 weeks even with radiotherapy. Our friend lost her ability to talk or respond very quickly. She passed away in less than 6 hours after we were told that she had about 2-6 weeks to live. She is survived by her husband, and 11 and 8 year-old sons.
We had shared the gospel with her and her husband in the last 6 weeks. It took time for us to know each other to bridge the cultural gap in the last 4 years to reach the point of sharing so directly.
It is fair and good to have hope for maybe things will turn out well- be healed and life goes on. However there is the reality and finality of death. There is the urgency for the soul to be saved and be discipled.
Sisters and brothers, make every effort to know the Word of God for yourself by reading and studying it, know God for yourself through personal devotional prayer, understand by making disciple and mature by reaching out because one only knows what he doesn’t know by trying to explain in depth to someone about his living faith. And if you have not decided to take on this Christian journey, ask, seek, knock, for the door will be opened for you. (Matt 7:7-12).
It has to be narrow, not to be exclusive but inclusive in holiness and acceptable to God who created us, died for us and fill us.
Benjamin Seah, PhD
Young Family 1A