The Smaller Gate

by Kit Goodwin



Enya's "Exile"

I pad on silent feet, down the dark tunnel, released from pain and the ravages of illness. My goal is ahead, a fact that I sense with every fiber of my being. I am alone, having reluctantly left behind the one I loved and served with my entire devotion.

Ah! I have reached the light, and I step out of the darkness to find that I am at the end of a dusty road. Before me stands a gate. It is unlike other gates I have known in my life - a barrier too high to jump or climb, with no breach along its edges. The latch is not made for one such as me. Beyond the gate, I glimpse rays of light and a meadow. I sit on the path in confusion, and then I see it - the Smaller Gate - a passage in the wall to one side of the Big Gate.

The Smaller Gate is welcoming and familiar. It is obviously made for one such as me. I dare to approach, and enter. As I pass through, I am greeted by others of my kind, who came here before me. I do not know them, and their scent is strange but reassuring. With them is a man named Francis. My new friends greet me in peace. They accompany me as I travel a new path that leads through the bright meadow. I am comforted by their companionship.

I know in my heart that I am safe from all harm here. I sense that the meadow is not lit by the sun, but by the Creator of all. I know in my heart that when my loved one comes, we will travel together on a pilgrimage to our Master, the source of that Light.

When I am not playing in the meadow with my new friends, nor accompanying Francis on his rounds, I often bask in the warming rays of The Light. At these times, I become lost in reverie, recalling my life before, and the one I loved. Sometimes, Francis senses my mood, and comes to comfort me, whispering into my hairy ears a reminder of the Glorious Promise.

I wait eagerly and with anxious longing for that moment. Then, I will be reunited with the one I love, and I will be set free to share in my loved one's glory.


For the anxious longing of the creation waits eagerly for the revealing
of the sons of God. For the creation was subjected to futility,
not of its own will, but because of Him who subjected it in hope
that the creation itself also will be set free from its slavery to corruption
into the freedom of the glory of the children of God.
Romans 8:19-21


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The painting of the gate at the top of my page is byThomas Kinkade