I love this picture of an old gate from an old homestead here in Arizona.
Gates are interesting. They are there to keep things in or keep thing out.
Here are some thoughts about gates that are good to think about.
You can learn a lot from the crippled man at the temple gate:
(1) A weakness in one area can cripple you in others – like a habit you can’t break, a lustful spirit, a bad temper or a self-pitying attitude. Apart from lacking strength in his ankles this man was normal, but one weakness stopped him from living that way. We all struggle with something. “The temptations that come into your life are no different from what others experience” (1Co 10:13 NLT). That’s why James writes, “Pray for each other so God can heal you” (Jas 5:16 NCV). So, how are you handling your weakness? Through denial? By having a pity-party? By walking past others who are struggling? This man was “at the temple gate to beg” – why are you there? You need to know that before you can get up and move on. Don’t settle there; determine “This may be who I am now, but it’s not who I’m going to be!”
(2) What are you looking for? A crutch to help you live with your problem? A way to avoid doing what’s necessary to become whole? This man was looking for handouts, not healing. Now, handouts are okay but they won’t get you back on your feet. Furthermore, when your interest in others is limited to what they can do for you, it causes you to miss what God can do for you. This man ended up walking, leaping, and praising God because that day he experienced God’s power – and you can too!
Don’t let man made gates keep you out of God’s best …