Adam’s Blog

That’s my thing, keepin’ the faith, baby. –Joe Friday

Get out of the Net

Posted by Andrea Graham on October 14, 2005

In my next two articles, we’re going to be looking at Mt 7:13,14:
“Enter ye in at the strait gate: for wide is the gate, and broad is the way, that leadeth to destruction, and many there be which go in there at: Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it.”

Now, you’ve all heard about the narrow road and the wide road. For a moment, however, lets take a detour off the Highway of Holiness and stop in at the Circus. We’ve got a lot of different acts going on at our circus, but today we’re just interested in the tightrope as we’re going to make that a metaphor for our Christian walk.

Now, going in, we’ve had ourselves a little argument going on about the Ringmaster and whether in His grace He hands us a baton to help us keep our balance or whether He’s provided a net. When we get in the door, the latter group cheers at the sight of a net underneath the tightrope and lords it over the first–until the ringmaster starts passing out batons. Seems in His grace, He’s done both.

After everyone has a baton, the Ringmaster takes the final one and heads for the latter, saying, “Here, let me show you how it’s done.” Even though He could do this blindfolded and on His hands, the Ringmaster puts the baton between His teeth and climbs on up. Then, holding His baton out to help maintain balance even though He doesn’t actually need it, He inches across the tightrope when He could’ve run it. On the other side, He turns and says, “To all who follow after Me, I shall give a crown.”

With that, we all get in line. Sal’s up first. He starts to climb the latter, then gets scared and jumps down into the net. Then it’s Jane’s turn. She manages to get all the way up the ladder, takes one step, starts to flail, and again jumps into the net. James then takes his shot at it, but halfway across, he loses his balance and also falls into the net, accidentally knocking Jane off the net and to the ground. Next, Christina takes her turn. She carefully inches across the tight rope. She slips a few times and almost falls, but uses her baton to regain her balance. On her last step across the tightrope, she throws herself into the waiting arms of the Ringmaster.

After her, Peter starts up the ladder. Halfway up, he loses his grip and falls into the net, but he pulls himself to his feet and tries again. This time, he makes it two steps on the tightrope. before again slipping and falling into the net. He again gets up, dusts himself off, and climbs back up the ladder. Halfway across the tightrope, he again falls and again climbs back up. On and on this process continues until everyone but the Ringmaster and Christina are jeering for Peter to stay in the net. At last, as dusk falls outside, Peter manages to make it three quarters of the way across the tightrope without falling. On the last few steps, he stumbles and starts to fall, but the Ringmaster reaches out and pulls Peter to safety with Him and Christina. He then puts a crown on Peter and Christina’s heads and says to them, ‘Well done.”

Sal, Jane, and John protest, “Hey! where’s our crowns?”

The Ringmaster looks down on them with sorrow in his eyes. “I didn’t provide that net so you could wallow in it. I provided the net so you could get back up and try again. And you, Jane, you couldn’t even manage to stay in the net.”

Now, take a moment and ask yourself where you are. Have you, like Jane, fallen out of the net? Are you down wallowing in it like James or did you toss yourself in it like Sal and not even try to walk the tightrope? Or, like Christina and Peter, are you doing your best and getting back up again when you fall?

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