Friday, January 29, 2010

Going Through the Gate

A little historical/sociological exposition...stick with me, it'll all make sense (I hope). Disclaimer: I am a writer, not a historian. My hubby is the one who likes to watch the history channel-by choice. So any 'facts' are through my slightly tilted lens!

Back in the day, in a galaxy far far away, or a time long long ago, people didn't live all sprawled out everywhere. The center of the action was in cities. The bible talks about the cities in terms of walls and gates. Certain gates where for certain 'traffic'. To get to the next area of the city for commerce, worship or life, one had to go through gates.

The aramaic word for gate in the bible is most closely associated with the idea of a squeezing, narrow place. The gates in the cities weren't wide, letting any old nomadic riff raff through. Rather, they were narrow and required a 'paring down' of stuff to only the important things towards doing business on the other side of the gate.

Still with me? Good.

Gates are a good metaphor for those 'squeezing' places in our lives. It is the place when we are right at the end of our selves, our resources. Gates are the place were we have 'pared down' anything extraneous or distracting. We are right at the place of breaking through to the other side. On the other side is new opportunity, support or healing. The other side is, well, greener.

A friend shared in church on Sunday something about gates that still is messing me up-in a good way.

He said that even if he is maimed and crawling, HE AND HIS ARE GETTING THROUGH THE GATE. He and his have gone through no less than a complete paring down in every area. YET, he stood up, before God, the church and whoever and made that proclamation.

I have decided this morning to make a similar declaration. My husband and I are facing another paring down, this one is close to the bone. No matter the circumstances, or cost-I AND MINE WILL GET THROUGH THE GATE.

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