Well after 20+ years of roadside advertising, Rock City in Chattanooga finally drew me in. My wife, my boys, my brother and his wife made the trip up Lookout Mountain to Rock City this past Saturday. I will just say quickly, it was a real nice time. Good value and some cool attractions. The attraction bellow is called “Fat Man Squeeze”.
Now for those of you who don’t know me, I am not the most petite of fellows so I was a little apprehensive when I approached this part of the hike. Mild claustrophobia is also not an asset here either, but my boys were there so I had to venture in. It was pretty tight. I had to walk sideways and the whole time the rock walls were pressing against my front and back sides, and while my movement forward was never completely hindered, I had to remain mindful of what I was doing to get to the end.
Reflecting back on “Fat Man Squeeze” two things came to mind. First is in Matthew 7:13-14 when Jesus delivering the Sermon on the Mount tells His listeners that the gate that leads to following Him is narrow. In context, Jesus makes this pronouncement directly following His command to treat others as you would like them to treat you. I feel like Jesus was saying that it takes diliberate effort on our part to be like Him, and that making that effort won’t always be easy. He is calling us to choose the narrow gate of sacrifce and servitude over the wider gate of selfishness and being served. The second thing that came to mind was Psalm 27:5.
For he will hide me in his shelter
in the day of trouble;
he will conceal me under the cover of
he will life me high upon a rock.
As I manuveured that tight squeeze I was a little freaked out at first. I felt confined and I felt a loss of control. What was odd was that the more I moved through it the pressure of the rock walls on both sides became comforting.
So whats the take-away? For me I learned a couple things in the “Fat Man Squeeze”. I learned that following Christ daily will aways require daily, even moment by moment, diliberate navigation through the narrow gate. I also learned that in the narrow gate there is joy and peace, and by letting go of whatever control we think we have and just enjoying the pressure of God’s love and grace that always surrounds we become enabled to fully enjoy the protection and security that God offers us in Jesus.
How do you guys see the narrow gate in the context of everyday life?
Peace and Grace.