Friday, August 24, 2007

"Traveling Light" - Chapter Eighteen & Conclusion

Welcome to the end of our summer book blog! We hope that Max Lucado's Traveling Light and the reflections on Psalm 23 blessed you and helped you on your way.

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"This is not our forever house. It will serve for the time being. But there is nothing like the moment we enter his door." (Traveling Light, Page 156)

This coming Sunday's Gospel is Luke 13:22-30. Jesus is asked if many or few will be saved, and he answers by talking about his door.

The door is narrow. To use Traveling Light terms, too much luggage will prevent us from getting in. In Baptism and Confirmation, we promised to drop "the world, the flesh and the devil." That's a lot of baggage, and all of us struggle to let go. But it needs to be dumped if we are to pass through the narrow door.

The owner of the house controls the door. Not everybody gets in. People who knew about the owner, even hung around him (maybe in church?) but never really knew him will be locked out. Lucado tells us to hang on to one burden - that of "homesickness." Maintain a desire to know God - join St. Augustine in praying, "My heart, O Lord, does not rest, until it rests in Thee." Open your heart to Jesus now and he will open his door at your arrival then.

There will be surprises at the door. Some of us who lagged way behind, dragging our too many bags for too much of life, will be among the first welcomed in to the heavenly party. And others, who seemed to be racing ahead, will be locked out. How can that be?

Lucado's book assumes that we will keep on Traveling. But some will become complacent and "stay home." Even though they were off to a good start toward the narrow door, they will stop traveling. They might go to church - kind of like watching a movie about some place but never really going there. Yet their lives will still be cluttered with all of the baggage. It won't feel heavy, but it will take up all kinds of space in their lives.

Those who stay on the journey will struggle, but they will be dumping luggage all along the way. Only by staying on the path do we discover what is necessary and what is disposable. Only on the journey do we learn to give up what we don't need.

And isn't our Christian challenge to follow Jesus on a journey?

God bless you as you travel on. Thank you for sharing this little part of our journey. Faithful brothers and sisters in Christ make the trip so much better.

2 comments:

denny & irene said...

We're Homesick!

Don't miss the conclusion. It does a wonderful job of tying the 18 chapters together.

Scott said...

What an enjoyable read everyone! I've already picked up another Lucado "Cure For The Common Life". I have shared several of my key learnings from "Traveling Light" with friends and colleagues and I know of two friends who have picked up the book. Chapter 18: Almost Heaven. Do we fear being closer to God or do we long for it? Think about it at the next funeral you attend. Are we mourning or are we truly celebrating the life that was? We mourn the loss perhaps, but we must keep focused upon our faith in the forever that awaits us and our loved ones! Godspeed to you all...I have enjoyed this little reading with you this summer!