When Jesus speaks about the “narrow gate,” I get a little nervous. Going through a narrow gate requires discipline—not one of my favorite words. As a child, I equated discipline with denying myself candy during Lent, or doing chores I didn’t like, or being nice to my siblings.
Gradually, I began to see discipline in a positive light—for two reasons. First, years ago I came across David Campbell’s classic definition of discipline as “remembering what you want.” I would add, “really want.” If I have a dream or a long-term goal, discipline helps me to achieve that dream or goal. Second, the word discipline looks a lot like the word disciple. To be a disciple of Jesus is to have a dream for myself and the whole world—one that will be realized by following Jesus’ disciplined way of love, sacrifice and service.
Living Faith provides brief daily Catholic devotions based on one of the Mass readings of the day. Published new each quarter, these reflections are written by women and men from a variety of backgrounds - lay people as well as clergy and religious. Learn more.
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