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No Clarity on the Narrow Road

There is a famous story that goes like this:
John Kavanaugh went to Calcutta to find out how he was to spend the rest of his life. When he met Mother Teresa, he asked her to pray for him. “What do you want me to pray for?” she replied. He then uttered the request he had carried thousands of miles: “Clarity. Pray that I have clarity.”

John was willing to do anything for God... He just wanted to know, beyond a shadow of a doubt, what that was.

“No,” Mother Teresa answered, “I will not do that.” When he asked her why, she said, “Clarity is the last thing you are clinging to and must let go of.” John replied, “But you always have clarity and that is all that I desire!" Mother Teresa laughed and said: “I have never had clarity; what I have always had is trust. So I will pray that you trust God.”

At first it sounds noble, doesn’t it? We are very used to praising that type of “surrender” in the Church.

Before you praise his level of surrender or before you start wishing you were as committed as him, consider the words of Jesus to a man very similar to Mr. John Kavanaugh.

Matthew 8:19-20: And a scribe came up and said to Jesus, “Teacher, I will follow you wherever you go.”

Perfect! He is willing to go wherever for Jesus.

Jesus said to him, “Foxes have holes, and birds of the air have nests, but the Son of Man has nowhere to lay his head.”

This is important, so listen: Surrender means laying down everything – including clarity – and trusting God to lead you.

In the bible, I don’t think anyone understood this more than Abraham.

God called Abraham to be a sojourner without a permanent home here on earth. The call from Jesus was no different in the New Testament and it’s no different for you today. God has called you to a life of uncertainty and dependence on Him. Abraham didn’t know then that he might be slaying his only son Isaac. He didn’t know then about the famines he’d experience. He didn’t know about the years of waiting on the Lord for the promise. He didn't know any of that then.

He surrendered everything – including the clarity he could have had in this life – and gained a crown of righteousness in another country.

That’s the point! Following the world gives you clarity in this life. Following Jesus gives you uncertainty in this life. You must understand this, children!

And so you’re facing an extreme, life-altering, eternity-paving choice at this very moment. You can have clarity for your life. It’s a decision that the scribe made after talking to Jesus there in Matthew. The broad road is full of church-goers who will surrender everything to the Lord… except for their clarity in this life.

Or, you can live like Abraham. You can lift that knife to slay your only son – the promise – even though you cannot see any other way for God to come through. The narrow road is a road where each step is trust – not clarity! But, every step you’re getting closer and closer to Jesus. And he’s enough.

3 AM


How can I stand in your presence. I can't. I am so unclean and so are my friends, people at my work, and everyone I know. I don't stand a chance. Do whatever you want with me and through me.

Is radio all about me? I don't have to work in radio if it's not about you.

Is my music really all about me? Then let me never sing another song if my heart isn't right.

I don't want to trick myself, Lord. I know what you have commanded me to do... Why do I fill my life with anything that isn't born out of fulfilling that command?

Let me only be your mouth piece here on this earth for a few years. I fear you and what you can do to me. Only by your grace can I ever even look at your face.

Let me not be consumed by not even any of the slightest perversions of your true command and call. Let me truly die to myself and teach others to do the same.

I Don't Need God For That

Does you life look like you rely on God?

It struck me the other day that I cannot even pray as Jesus instructed people to pray. Part of the famous "Lord's Prayer" has become outdated. I'm referring to the line:

"Give us this day our daily bread..."

We have so set up our lives to not rely on God that this verse just seems unnecessary to us now. Maybe in a time when we didn't have as much money or when resources weren't as widely accessible as they are now this prayer might have been necessary -- but there just isn't a great need for it now.

Do you see what has happened? Do you see what we've done? Slowly, over time, we have written God out of His own story.

Since the beginning of time, this whole thing has been about God. He is the center of it all. He is the star of the show.

We have slowly setup our lives to not need God. We have forgotten about him.

In just a short time the Lord will either come back, or we'll die. We don't really have that long. At that moment, all that will matter is Him. Yet when was the last time we thought about that moment? When was the last time you longed for the Lord to come back?

2 Peter 3:10 says,

"But the day of the Lord will come like a thief, and then the heavens will pass away with a roar, and the heavenly bodies will be burned up and dissolved, and the earth and the works that are done on it will be exposed. Since all these things are thus to be dissolved, what sort of people ought you to be in lives of holiness and godliness, waiting for and hastening the coming of the day of God."

God is looking for people who are waiting for that day. God is looking for people who know they need him.

Do you need him? I mean, does you life look like you're relying on him?

To be honest, I don't know how to end this discussion. I don't want you to end you life focused on yourself. I don't want you to end your life forgetting about God. More importantly, I want you to spend your life needing God.

I don't know what it is for you that keeps you from needing God. Maybe you spend too much time working, hanging out with friends, playing games, planning your future, reading books, etc. I don't know. I just know that in a few short years the things around you will be gone and all that will matter is how you spent your time.

Do you spend your life needing God or not needing him?