Regardless of your religious beliefs it is an undeniable fact that the Bible is full of nuggets of wisdom that are applicable to everyone. One such pearl is found in Matthew 7:13-14 when Jesus encourages His followers to "Enter by the narrow gate..." which, while difficult, leads to life. Aside from spiritual connotation, this guidance is both relevant and profound for all people who seek to have an impact on the world around them and, since you are reading this, I believe you are such a person.
So what does it mean to "enter by the narrow gate"? Generally speaking, it means not to follow the crowd. It means to do what you know is right; to follow your heart and what you believe in even when it goes against the grain of everyone around you. We, as people, have a natural inclination to want to fit in. We want to feel like we are a part of something whether that's a family, a peer group, a team, etc. Our desire to feel like we belong is so strong that it can become detrimental to us. Once we feel we belong to a group we often follow the direction of that adopted group whether for the good or for the bad. This primal need is how children get caught up in gangs and eager young professionals get involved in corporate scandals, they just wanted to fit in.
This desire to follow the crowd is a subconscious, innate need. Scientific research has shown that on public transportation and on major highways the majority of passengers and cars are always in the center; the closer you get the the extremes the fewer people you find. Isn't this true of life? Start paying attention as you go about your days. When shopping in stores there's always more people in line at the center registers, always more people in the center of the crowd at concerts, the homes at the center of neighborhoods often sell more quickly. Why? Because we like to fit in and belong. There's always comfort and a sense of security in the crowd for which we yearn. We like to take the "broad gate" so we don't stand out and so everyone accepts us. But, I venture to say, that if you follow this blog you are tired of that crowd and you are ready to stand out.
Building a strong legacy requires that you think and step outside of the box. That you challenge the norm and refuse to settle for the status quo. Sure, we all leave a memory of ourselves behind that is itself our legacy but, if you're like me, we want to have an impact beyond the job you worked or the house you lived in. I want to be remembered as a person who inspired people, who motivated people, and who helped them to strive to reach their greatest potential. I want to build future leaders of the world who work not only to change their families and communities but to change the nations. If I am to achieve these goals I MUST stand out; I CANNOT fit in with the crowd. And so I challenge you today to "enter by the narrow gate" in your life so that your legacy is one of great power and profound impact. Can I count on you?
Romaine A. Wright