How are his words to be interpreted? Let me offer an answer that comes from a reverse thinking. Ask someone if he/she is a Catholic. To answer in the affirmative, the person will probably say something like Yes. Of course. Do you think that you would be offered the same reply if your asked this question as a follow up: "Do you live the life we, as Catholics, as called to live?" This is where the answers become interesting. Most all of the answers might begin with "Well, you see ..." and so forth.
What Jesus is teaching is that a guaranteed place at the heavenly banquet comes when an individual lives the life that Jesus has put before us. We might ask ourselves this question: Am I truly loyal and faithful to all of the teachings of Jesus Christ and his Church? In his words to the people Jesus did not say I am giving you 10 Commandments. Chose the seven you want to follow. Hardly his style. He was giving his all for the Father. What he calls us to do is give our all to following in his footsteps; to accept his teachings as the norms for our lives.