“Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” (John 14:6, ESV)
One of my favorite things about scripture is that it meets us where we are. The same verse or verses can speak different things to us at different times in our lives. We are able to see multiple meanings from the same scriptures depending on the stage of our faith. The different meanings are not incongruous with one another either. There is simply enough room for us to grow into the Word of God.
Last week we looked briefly at Matthew 7:13-14, “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” (ESV). My focus was entirely on the gates. Yet as I lay in bed a couple of nights ago, open to the Holy Spirit, I was awakened to the thought of “Getting in the Way.”
Almost immediately my thoughts turned back to Matthew 7:13-14. Jesus spoke of two gates, yes, but He also spoke of the pathway on the other side of the gates. He used the word ὁδός, which according to Strong’s Concordance means, “Apparently a primary word; a road; by implication a progress (the route, act or distance); figuratively a mode or means: – journey, (high-) way.”
In the early days of Christianity, it was simply referred to as “The Way” (see Acts 9:2, 19:9, 19:23; 24:14, and 24:22). It should not be lost to us that “The Way” is a journey, and not a destination. If we apply the old description to the new, we are technically becoming Christians every day of our lives.
Our faith enables us to walk the pathway to God. Jesus said, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me” (John 14:6, ESV, emphases mine). Jesus described Himself as a journey!
This brings great comfort to me because it reminds me that I have not “arrived.” When we come to faith in Christ it is only the beginning. As we walk the path of faith we get rocks in our shoes. We get blisters. The sun beats down on us and drains us of our energy. Sometimes we get disoriented. And while we may not always enjoy hardships that come along The Way, while we are troubled by our failures, we are still on a journey. The destination makes it possible for us to endure all kinds of difficulties.
The author of Hebrews wrote, “Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us also lay aside every weight, and sin which clings so closely, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking to Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of the throne of God” (Hebrews 12:1-2, ESV emphasis mine).
I will continue this theme over the next couple of weeks, looking at “The Way” from different aspects. As always, these are the musings of a mindful disciple.
Blessings on your week!
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