Meditation is an ideal way to pray. Using God's word (Lectio Divina) allows me to hear, listen and reflect on what the Lord wants to say to me - to one of his disciples - just like He did two thousand years ago.
The best time to reflect is at the beginning of the day and for at least 15 to 30 minutes.
Prior to going to sleep, read the Mass readings for the next day and then, in the morning, reflect on the Meditation offered on this website.
I hope these daily meditations allow you to know, love and imitate the Lord in a more meaningful way.
God bless you!

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Diverse, Yet Narrow

Wednesday of the Thirtieth Week in Ordinary Time

(Click here for readings)

Jesus passed through towns and villages, teaching as he went and making his way to Jerusalem.  Someone asked him, "Lord, will only a few people be saved?"  He answered them, "Strive to enter through the narrow gate, for many, I tell you, will attempt to enter but will not be strong enough."

Will tomorrow's test be easy?  Does this question sound familiar to you?  It does to me!  I used to ask it all the time.  Of course, none of my experienced teachers ever answered my question, and for good reason.

Lord, will only a few people be saved?  In other words, "Lord, is it easy to get into heaven?  Or, "What's the minimum I need to do to get into Heaven?"

Notice the Lord does not say either "yes" or "no", but "strive!"  STRIVE!  TRY!  Make it a priority!  Make it important!

Practice makes perfect. When a young aspiring pianist asked an old man how to get to Carnegie Hall, the old man told him, "Practice man!  Practice!"

Strive.  Try.  The good must get better and the better must get betterer.  We have an entire lifetime to improve, to "be perfect as our heavenly Father is perfect."  Yes, perfection is not impossible, but it does take a lifetime. 

Do you think you can do this all on your own?  Forget it.  No one changes on their own.  No one is saved on their own.  No one gets to heaven on their own.  I think we can all believe this.  We need help.  We need the Lord's help.  We need His grace.  We need His grace to do what is good, right and holy.  We need His grace for everything, especially for an increase in faith, hope and love.  We cannot have faith in Him without Him.  We cannot live in hope without Him.  We cannot love the way He demands us to love without Him.  We need Him.  We need the Lord and He needs us. He will not save us alone.  "The Lord created us without our consent but He will not save us without our consent" (St. Augustine).

But is getting to heaven something you strive for?  Yes, but be careful.  Getting to Heaven for a Christian is like winning the Medal of Honor for a soldier.  It is not something you seek but rather an acknowledgement of what you sought after in life.  Heaven does not go to the victor.  It goes to those who gave their very best, their personal best.  Those who seek the Medal of Honor will always fall short.  Those who strive to enter Heaven will never be strong enough to enter. 

So we should all think about Heaven as often as a musician thinks about winning an Emmy, or an actor an Oscar, or a soldier The Medal of Honor:  almost never.  No one lays down their life for a Medal just like no one lays down their life to get to Heaven.  Rather, it is given freely out of love and received out of love - love of art, of music, of country, but most importantly of God and neighbor.

Heaven is not something we strive for, per se, but an acknowledgement of a life driven by God through faith, hope and love. 

The gate is narrow.  Heaven may be very diverse, but it has a very narrow definition.


  1. As I meditated on this gospel passage, I couldn't help but worry. Am I doing all it takes to lead a good Christian life? Will I be able to pass through the narrow gate? I think about my character flaws and weaknesses. I'm often ashamed that I struggle with anger, resentment, envy, sensuality, and a desire for recognition. I wish God created me with a temperament that's more laid back and less anxious. I find myself over-thinking and over-analyzing circumstances in my life to the point I begin to think I'm not good enough for God's love or anyone else's. I try so hard to be faithful to the Church. I try to be the best Christian I can be. But am I striving and trying hard enough in the eyes of Our Lord?

    Will tomorrow's test be easy? It all depends on what God has planned for me. After the last month with a storm raging in my personal life, I pray things remain quiet for a while......


  2. I have wondered what Jesus meant by “…. will not be strong enough”. I appreciate your thoughts on this – I have never thought about it this way.

    Just today, in re-reading this meditation, I thought about all the distractions of this world: materialism, ambition, keeping up with the Jones’, making sure my kid gets in the best college, making sure my house is bigger and more beautiful than others, etc. These are not all bad, but we need moderation. So, I thought that if I won’t be strong enough to temper these potential distractions taking over my time, then I won’t be able to dedicate enough time in praying, focusing on others, meditating and just ‘wasting’ my time on God and others. I won’t have time for the most important people in my life.

    It is such a rewarding, invigorating feeling to put experience above things, and I don’t always mean great feelings. But the more I give time to experience life just by breathing in the present moment, I am so much more grateful for this life God has given me.

    Beauty will save the world, someone once said. Your meditations are truly beautiful.


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