The Road Map
Think about road maps. It helps people who are not familiar with the routes to proceed in the right direction. You need not stop to ask anyone. What you need to do is follow the directions; recognize the landmarks properly and proceed. You will reach your destination quite comfortably.
So to reach your goal of freedom, you need to have a road map. This is to make sure that you reach the destination with minimum effort and without loss of time and energy. A proper guide in this form will prevent you from taking unnecessary deviations.
Now you may ask, “Which is the road map I need to refer to?” It is a wise question indeed. Many companies publish road maps. So which is the one you need to carry? If you are in an earnest attempt to travel on the road to freedom, you need not search long to find the right road map.
This road map gives you detailed and specific directions to reach your goal; namely freedom. It also tells you about the crossroads where you need to be careful so that you may not go in wrong directions. It tells you about enemies who might try to stop your journey to freedom. But above all this it tells you the help you have to reach the right destination.
So reach out to your road map that can guide you in the right direction; the Bible!
The Two Roads
The Bible constantly speaks of two ways. These ways are the Way of Life and the Way of Death. Now the Bible as a road map tells us to follow the way of life. At the same time it warns us of the disaster that can happen to us if we follow the way of death.
The way of life leads you to eternal life. The gate that leads to it is small and narrow. Only a few choose to travel on it. The travelers on this road obey God. It is the way of holiness. Those who travel on this road are wise. Above all they love God. And His blessings rest on their lives.
But the way of death leads you to destruction. The gate that leads to it is wide. The road is also broad. And many choose to travel on it. The travelers on this road disobey God. It is a way of uncleanness. Many who travel on this road are fools. They hate God and even deny His existence. They also love wickedness. And the curse of God shall fall upon their lives.
Travel on the way of life may at times be hard and filled with suffering. Feelings of loneliness may strike at any moment. Darkness can cloud the path unexpectedly. Yet in the end the path will shine with light.
But travel on the way of death is almost a carefree one. Those who travel on it will always have company. The way is dark always; but lit by dim lights that shade the sinful acts. There are lots of byroads. And there are lots of houses of various pleasures in them. There are colorful lamps hung out in front of them inviting people to visit. And like flies attracted by the brightness of the flames people go in and perish. Travel on this road ends in the powerful jaws of death.
So there are two roads that the Bible describes. The way of life and the way of death. You can travel on any one of these ways. It is your choice. But God is asking you this day to choose the way of life which takes you to freedom. Not only shall He bless you for this choice; but He shall also reward you for your obedience at the end of your journey.
The Tug of War
It is possible that you are traveling on the way of death right now. You are enjoying life and it is free from trouble. And you may ask, “How can you tell that I don’t have freedom in this road?” It is a good question.
But the freedom you are enjoying is a false kind of freedom. Yet again you may ask, “All right, can you prove that what I enjoy now is not real freedom?” That surely is a challenging question. Now here is the answer.
Can you recall any time in your life when you attempted to break away from the road you were traveling to cross over to the road to freedom? Actually, you might have felt a huge tug of war in your heart when you had tried to move on to the road to freedom. And finally your team would have pulled you back. So the result was that you could not change track to the road to freedom!
So what does it prove? It simply tells you that there is some evil power which is controlling you. It does not allow you to move out on your own. When you try to do so, it pulls you back. And if you are wise enough, you would have realized that a greater power than the one which holds you now is needed for you to break free!
And if you really want to break free, you need to see where you stand before you make a move. For that we shall look at the road map once again.
A Look in the Mirror
This road map that we are speaking about now is a very special one. If you hold it close you will find your reflection in it. It functions as a mirror. The more you look into it the more sharp the image in it becomes. And you will indeed be surprised at what you see there!
Now take a look in this mirror. At first you may not be able to see clearly. But do not give up! Keep on looking. And your features will come sharply on the image very soon.
“Look! Are you seeing some surprising things there?”
“Are you not taken aback by what you see?”
“I never thought I looked like this!”
And this what you might have seen: Instead of a lovely resemblance of yourself, you saw a blurred image. At the first look itself it must have shown you your sunken eyes, frowning forehead, scowling face, lips being bitten in anger, unkempt hair and disheveled dress!
And as you peered into the darkness that seemed to surround your image you must have seen that instead of standing upright you were crawling on the ground. Oh, the powers of darkness had pulled you down! However hard you tried you could not get up!
With great sadness and despair as you kept looking you realized that you were locked in a prison which felt like a red-hot burning oven. And each prison bar spelled the name of your sins!
The tears in your eyes now blur the image you had seen. You now realize how helpless you are. You now see that the road you had been traveling is not the road to freedom. And you cry out, “Oh, help! Someone come and set me free!”
And as you cried out, the mirror shook. The image was gone. You applied the brakes and parked the vehicle on to the side. As you rolled down the windows to get some fresh air, the wind turned the pages of the road map. And your eyes got hooked to a signpost there. It read thus:
“So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed.”
You thought about it. But you could not understand what it meant. But still you knew that it spoke about being set free. It also told you that if you are thus set free, you will always be free!
You looked around to see if someone could help you to know what it meant. You saw someone taking a stroll in the meadow nearby. You rushed to him. But he just shouted to you to leave him alone. You came back to the side of the road. You frantically tried to flag down the passing cars. But no one stopped for you.
You broke down and wept. Your whole body shook. And as you rested by the tree trunk, the gentle wind kissed you to sleep.
And the nightmare returned. The same prison. Now burning hot. You are still crawling. Each prison bar stood strong preventing your escape. Shame like molten lava burned your mind. And again you cried out in your sleep: “Oh, who shall set me free!”
The Son Sets You Free
This time your cry is answered. And in your dream you see a brilliant light shining outside your prison. Its powerful beam creates a pathway to your prison door. And One like the sun in its noon-day splendor is walking up to you. He is clothed in white. And love, pure love, is what His eyes gently speak!
He lifts His hands and breaks open the prison door. No one can stop Him from doing so. And as He walks up to you, you look up amazed. Because you now see the mark of wounds upon His body. And He now places His hands upon your head. And as you feel the blood from His wounds washing you from head to foot; you see the prison bars melt down one by one. You are now lifted up to stand upon your feet. And He looks once more upon your face. Your eyes lock. And you weep again. He wipes your tears away. And you can do nothing but gently whisper, “Thank you Jesus, thank you so much!”
And then the falling rain drops awakes you from your sleep. And you look around. Your sleep was pleasant to you. The grass looks greener. Each little flower sprightly dancing in the meadow is sweetly smiling as if they were happy for you!
And you find the rainbow spreading its arc across the skies. It seems to say, “Oh, my child, you are now free. Free for ever. You are now like a bird in the skies!”
And the journey continues. But this time the road is different. It is the road OF freedom!
Read more posts in Living Streams