13 “Enter through the narrow gate; for the gate is wide and the road is easy[a] that leads to destruction, and there are many who take it. 14 For the gate is narrow and the road is hard that leads to life, and there are few who find it. 15 “Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing but inwardly are ravenous wolves. 16 You will know them by their fruits. Are grapes gathered from thorns, or figs from thistles? 17 In the same way, every good tree bears good fruit, but the bad tree bears bad fruit. 18 A good tree cannot bear bad fruit, nor can a bad tree bear good fruit.
13 There are two paths before you; you may take only one path. One doorway is narrow. And one door is wide. Go through the narrow door. For the wide door leads to a wide path, and the wide path is broad; the wide, broad path is easy, and the wide, broad, easy path has many, many people on it; but the wide, broad, easy, crowded path leads to death. 14 Now then that narrow door leads to a narrow road that in turn leads to life. It is hard to find that road. Not many people manage it.15 Along the way, watch out for false prophets. They will come to you in sheep’s clothing, but underneath that quaint and innocent wool, they are hungry wolves. 16 But you will recognize them by their fruits. You don’t find sweet, delicious grapes growing on thorny bushes, do you? You don’t find delectable figs growing in the midst of prickly thistles. 17 People and their lives are like trees. Good trees bear beautiful, tasty fruit, but bad trees bear ugly, bitter fruit. 18 A good tree cannot bear ugly, bitter fruit; nor can a bad tree bear fruit that is beautiful and tasty.
Tonight is the night! The Advent process of waiting in anticipation will soon be complete. Tonight we will read from the Gospel of Luke, we will proclaim our faith in song, and hold our candles high as we sing Silent Night, Holy Night. It will be beautiful.
But before we get there, we have a couple more steps to make on our journey to Bethlehem. We have yet another invitation that we must consider. It is the invitation to be known by the good fruit that we produce. It is preceded by the image of the narrow road that leads to life. It is the road that is worth finding. It is not always easy to find but I believe we are on the right track toward the fruitful outcome from our journey.
Stay the course, live the life, keep the faith, be strong in the Lord and you will be known by the fruit that flows from your life!
Tomorrow morning will be a time for family, gifts, and memories. We will think back to years past, give thanks for those who have gone before us, and experience the fullness of life that we know through family and friends. We pray that the experience of the Lord will fill you to overflowing and that your journey of faith will be fresh, vital and alive. Worship the Lord in Spirit and truth! Come, let us live life together in the presence of the Child!