My father was a big fan of bowling. Nothing gave him more satisfaction than sending the bowling ball down that narrow lane to score a strike. Now he knew that if that ball was off track even a tiny bit that it would end in the gutter and there would be no points. If you did not practice and were not disciplined in your technique then you would not succeed.
However, if you practiced, remained focused, and stay disciplined you may come home with the perfect 300 score. Many times, my father returned home as a member of the 300 Club knowing that all his hard work got him where he wanted to be and the reward was exhilarating.
In today’s gospel, Jesus talks with us about the narrow path in life that leads us to the greatest gift there is, the Kingdom of God. He reminds us that this path is not easy and many will not succeed. What do we need to do to succeed on this narrow path as a disciple of Christ? The best answer comes from the word disciple itself, we need to have discipline.
Following Jesus takes work. As we begin our journey, initially putting ourselves in a position to succeed and commit to practicing our faith seem reasonable. Yet, as we continue through our life we are called to put God first and to share the good news with others. The narrow path starts to become more difficult and can conflict with our secular society.
It is discipline that helps keep us on the narrow path. We know that there will be rough times but if we keep focused and are dedicated to our faith then we will experience the greatest joy imaginable. We know that the salvation Jesus offers is for all of us. Will you begin the journey and use discipline to travel the narrow path? The reward will be exhilarating… it will be the Kingdom of God.