8/7/12 Misha and friends, late teens.
Today I'm driving across Wisconsin on Interstate 94. I happened upon a preacher on a Christian radio station and listened for awhile. Among other things he spoke about the short parable of the wide and narrow roads that Jesus described in Matthew 7 - "For wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it. But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it." The Interstate sure feels like the wide road as I'm swept along with the current of cars and trucks and humanity, all in a hurry, jockeying for position, taking the shortest and easiest route but missing all the beautiful scenery along the way. I stopped at a rest area, where I found a group of teenagers gathered around a picnic table for a smoke. I gave them some million dollar gospel tracks which helped start a conversation. They had all moved to Chicago from the Ukraine about three years ago and were on their way to the Wisconsin Dells. They had all been raised Catholic in the Ukraine and continue to attend a Catholic church in Chicago. They all agreed with one of them, Misha, that if they are good enough they will go to heaven. Their English was a bit halting and no one really expressed any questions or differing opinions, so I just explained the message of law and grace on the back of the tracts I had given them. Since they were sort of shy I applied the "good person" questions to myself rather than asking for a volunteer. Jesus' parable was still on my mind, so I finished by telling them about it - "Most people believe they are good enough for heaven, but Jesus warned us that many are on the road to destruction. I'm just here to give you a friendly warning to get on the right road that leads to life" It occurs to me that we all start out on the road to destruction, that before belief in Jesus we were already condemned according to John 3:18 - "...whoever does not believe stands condemned already because he has not believed in the name of God’s one and only Son." Does this mean that most will end up in hell? I sure hope not. I do know that its not too late for Misha and his friends to get on the right road. Will you pray that they will?