The narrow and wide gates

by Paul Yeung

It is human nature to look for shortcuts, seeking for an easy path especially when we go throughsuffering. Yet, we all know that suffering and death are part of life, something we need to accept and embrace with love and courage, instead of to avoid with denial or fear. However, the trend of this world is to attempt to avoid suffering and pain at all cost, increasingly in the name of compassion.

As can be witnessed during natural disasters, compassionate love is often expressed and made complete through suffering. It brings out the noble face of humanity which is a reflection of God’s image. People in many countries are advocating for euthanasia in the name of compassion. But real compassion requires real companionship, like what Mother Mary did for Jesus during His Passion, sharing His suffering. They both know that there is a purpose for His Passion. And Jesus willingly goes through all sufferings and offers up His life to bring about salvation for all.

“Unless a grain of wheat falls into the earth and dies, it remains just a single grain; but if it dies, it bears much fruit.” (John 12:24)

Through His Passion, Jesus has shown us the way to follow God’s will and to embrace our own passion and that of our loved ones. Like the dying of the grain of wheat and the pruning of the branches which are necessary passages to new life, the afflictions we experience in this life are necessary passages to attain holiness, preparing ourselves for eternal life. The fruits will be plentiful as we die to ourselves through which we are sanctified and God glorified. Seeking shortcuts will not only strip away true human dignity and the expression of real compassionate love, but will also deprive ourselves and our loved ones of the opportunity to blossom and bear great fruits of life.

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