Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: Enter (02/27/06)
TITLE: The Gate of Grace
By Gail Blackwell
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Grace awoke with a start from a troubling dream. Lying still in the bed, she tried to recall the details. She had been dreaming about Louise.
Two years ago Louise had joined the sales team in the real estate office where Grace worked. They hit it off right away and soon became close friends.
In her dream, Grace and Louise were walking arm in arm down a beautiful street. Abruptly the scene changed and they were standing before two gates, each marking the entrance to separate roads.
One gate was small and simple and opened onto a narrow dirt path that wound its way through a forest. Grace and Louise could see a few people walking down the cool, sun-dappled path. As they watched, the people went around a curve in the path and were soon out of sight.
Then they walked over to the wide, ornate gate. The scenery couldn’t have been more different. There was a broad boulevard lined with skyscrapers glittering under bright lights. Throngs of people crowded onto the street. They could hear music and laughter as the people called to one another in excitement.
Louise’s eyes lit up when she saw the scene before her. “Just look at all the people. I wonder where they’re going. Let’s go in and see what all the excitement is about.”
Grace stepped back from the gate, repulsed by what she saw. She responded to Louise’s request with hesitation, “I don’t know. Something about this seems familiar but I can’t quite recall why.”
Suddenly she remembered. She had come here with her mother as a child. Her mother had shown her the gates and told her she would have to decide which one to enter. Grace remembered being warned about the dangers inside the wide gate.
As Grace related this to her, Louise laughed at her fears. “How could there be danger? Look at all of those happy people. They are having such a good time.”
Louise grabbed the bars of the gate with both hands and looked with longing at the brightly lit street. Finally, she made her decision. “You can stay behind if you want to, but I’m going in.” She hugged Grace then went through the gate eagerly, turning back for a final wave before she became lost in the crowd.
Standing there alone, Grace felt incredible sadness. She turned slowly and walked to the other gate. In the distance she saw a man beckoning her to come in. With a sense of urgency, she opened the gate and walked quickly to meet him. The man welcomed her with a smile and offered to walk with her.
It was so cool and peaceful on the path. She could hear birds singing and water trickling nearby. Along the path stone benches were placed where they could sit and talk and drink in the breathtaking beauty of their surroundings.
After resting for a while, they would rise and continue their walk. She noticed, however, that the road was not always smooth. Often there were huge boulders blocking the way. At other times the path grew so steep, he would have to take her by the hand and help her climb up.
She often grew weary but he was always there to encourage her. If she stumbled and fell, he gently lifted her up and brushed her off. She was thankful for his presence.
Grace often wondered about Louise. What had happened to her? Did she find the happiness she was looking for on that broad road? She asked her friend to explain the meaning of the two gates.
He responded, “Enter by the narrow gate, for the gate is wide, and the way is broad that leads to destruction, and many are those who enter by it. For the gate is small, and the way is narrow that leads to life, and few are those who find it” (Matt. 7:13-14) NASB.
It was at that moment Grace had awakened from her dream. She knew what she needed to do. As one who had already made the decision to enter through the narrow gate, she must warn Louise before it was too late. She had to explain to her about the two gates and tell Louise about Jesus, her Friend and constant Companion. After praying for courage and wisdom, Grace arose with eager anticipation and began to get ready for work…and her appointment with Louise.
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