When I first attempted to read, “The Elijah Task” by John and Paula Sanford I couldn’t digest its in-depthness. For the most part, in more ways than not I was carnal minded and questioned why a loving God would allow me to suffer; I wasn’t ready!
Now I realize a life of sacrifice and suffering is integral and necessary in the life of a follower of Christ. Evangelist Paul Washer nailed it in his youtube sermon, “We Have Forgotten that the Way is Narrow.” He quoted this popular scripture that many of us (myself included) have misinterpreted. In Matthew 7:13-14 we read of Jesus saying,
“Enter by the narrow gate; for wide is the gate and broad is the way that leads to destruction, and there are many who go in by it. Because narrow is the gate and difficult is the way which leads to life, and there are few who find it.”
Paul Washer says accepting Christ as your personal savior is the broad way for many of us who profess to know Christ. We take the initial step of accepting Christ as our savior but live a life contrary to the message of the gospel. We don’t want to sacrifice; we don’t want to suffer; we want to serve Christ on our own terms. The narrow path are those who lay aside all of their selfish ambitions and desires and they take up their cross and follow Christ; sadly, there’s only few who take this path!
John and Paula Sanford stated in their book, The Elijah Task:
“When a person receives a call from God, he must leave behind whatever has been his form of life up to that moment. When Jesus called James and John, “They immediately left the ship and their father, and followed him” (Matt. 4:22, emphasis added).
Elisha took his oxen, slew them, and hacked up and burned his plow and harness for the barbecue he then held for his friends and relatives. He has thereby given three irrevocable signs. His oxen are slain; he cannot return to his farming. His instruments are burned. All his family have eaten salt with him to witness to his departure from farming to the service of God. There is no way he can return.
Whoever receives a call from God to high service-evangelism, prophecy, ministry, priesthood, or whatever it may be-should renounce whatever has formed him. This is not to insult his heritage. It is to cut apron strings. It is to deny any further formation by the old carnal life. Now he will be formed by and serve only the God who has called him.”
Are you up for the task to heed God’s high call for service or will you continue to take the broad way ( the road that’s most familiar and popular)?