Your Own Eye – The Roads and Gates Series – Part 5 - Pocket Fuel on Matthew 7:7

Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. Matthew 7:7 (NIV)

Your Own Eye – The Roads and Gates Series – Part 5

Go to PART 1  |  PART 2  |  PART 3  |  PART 4  |  PART 5  |  PART 6

Just before these words, Jesus said: “Why do you see the speck that is in your brother's eye, but do not notice the log that is in your own eye? Or how can you say to your brother, ‘Let me take the speck out of your eye,’ when there is the log in your own eye?” (Matt 7:3-4).

One of the hardest transformations we make in life is to go from a person who see’s the specks in the eyes of others, to becoming one who asks God to help us see the specks in our own, and work to redeem them.

I’ve always read Matthew 7:7 (above) in the framework of asking for things outside of myself: favor, blessings (we have GOT to talk about blessing soon…), things and experiences that I want. But lately, I’ve taken these sacred words inward, and I’ve been asking God about my true self. The one hidden underneath baggage and image and brokenness.

I’m seeking that part of me that sin, and the separation from peace and others, forced into hiding. I’m knocking on the door of far away dreams, and downright bold hopes that I have had for my life, the lives of others, and the earth. I’ve been asking for wisdom, clarity, and strength to push open those narrow gates of digging deep into life and living it well.

Self-work is spiritual work. It’s not selfish. It’s beyond behavior modification and keeping up with the proverbial Christian “Joneses”. It goes much deeper than that, into the marrow of our being. The space where we can’t tell where we end and spirit begins. The place where we are held in the grip of grace.

We can live a life of willpower: practicing the right things and checking off boxes on the list of “how to be a good Christian.”
We can live a soapbox life where we talk and preach and shout and post about all the ways everyone else is doing it wrong and how they should change to do it right.
We can live a life of commentary where we speculate the eternal destiny and the earthbound validity of others based on the limited knowledge we have of them.

Or we can,

“Enter through the narrow gate; for the gate is wide and the road is easy that leads to destruction, and there are many who take it. For the gate is narrow and the road is hard that leads to life, and there are few who find it.” (JANT).

Many take the easy route of neglecting self-work and focusing on the faults of others and the world. But that kind of living only leads to dualistic practices – us versus them, superiority, me first, scarcity. It pits us against each other in fights that we don’t need to have. Practices that constantly divide and destroy and tear down.

But the narrow gate of self-work? Of asking the hard questions of our own heart and God, about our belonging and purpose? Seeking truth rather than pretending to have attained it? Living generously with our money and our listening and our kindness? Seeing others through empathy and grace, compassion and kindness, preferring their needs above our own, and understanding that if I share, I don’t miss out, rather my joy is multiplied, and life becomes more than abundant if we seek to give rather than to receive?

If I walk the hard road of faith, where nothing is certain, and all is a gift…

It leads to life all round.

If I walk the hard road of faith, where nothing's certain and all is a gift. It leads to life all round. Click to Tweet

Go to Part 6 – Leads To Life »

Written by Lizzy Milani
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