Sunday

Why closed doors are gifts

Ever have a door slammed in your face?

Not just gently closed, but all-out slammed?

In no uncertain terms, it said, "You're not welcome here. You don't belong. We don't want you."

It hurts, doesn't it? Especially if that was the door you really, really wanted to walk through.


Perhaps you've prayed for months (or years) for a child, a husband, a promotion, an invitation. You picture your life with the object of your prayers and it looks GOOD. Fulfilling. Right.

But the doors. One after another. Like an Avon lady desperate to make her quota, you knock on one, then the next, each time hoping THIS is the one. The month. The man. The opportunity.

Sometimes one cracks open, and your heart lifts in hope. Sometimes a welcoming face or encouraging sign peeks around, and you begin to dream. Sometimes you actually extend a foot over the threshold, only to have your toes crushed by painful resistance.

As disappointing and discouraging as closed doors can be, deep down inside, like the silver lining in the  cloud, there is great comfort in them. 

Closed doors are gifts.

They are evidence that a loving God is ordering the circumstances of our lives for our good.

Here are five thoughts to bring perspective when you encounter a closed door:
 
1.  God has a plan for your life and it is good. "I know the plans I have for you," says the Lord, "Plans to prosper you and not to harm you. Plans to give you a hope and a future" (Jeremiah 29:11)

2.  No good plan of God's can be twarted. Job said, "I know that you can do all things; no plan of yours can be thwarted" (Job 42:2).

3. God can use what appears to be bad for good. Joseph is a classic example. Despite being kidnapped, envied by his brothers, sold into slavery, falsely accused, stripped of his job (and his robe), thrown in jail, and forgotten by a "friend," God used Joseph to save his family and an entire nation. "You intended to harm me," Joseph acknowledged,"but God intended it for good to accomplish what is now being done," (Genesis 50:20).

4. There are no mistakes in the Kingdom, (Romans 8:28). And though Romans 8:28 reminds us that "all things work together for good to those that love God and are called according to his purpose," it's important to read the companion verse to understand the full picture: " For those God foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the likeness of his Son" (29). Much of what happens in our lives is less about God accomplishing something WITH us and more about accomplishing something IN us.

Oswald Chambers, in his classic devotional My Utmost for His Highest, says this:

"The idea is not that we do work for God, but that we are so loyal to Him that He can do His work through us--'I reckon on  you for extreme service, with no complaining on your part and no explanation on Mine.' God wants to use us as He used His own Son."

5.  When God says "yes," it's because he loves us. When he says "no," it's because he loves us. This quote from O'Hallesby says it all. Because God loves us, he will open those doors we are to walk through and close those we should not. 

Our job is to knock, pray, and trust.

What doors are you knocking on today? Which have remained closed? 

Will you join me in saying to God, "I trust you"?

Leave a comment below and join in the conversation. I'd love to share your faith walk. If you're reading via email, click here to comment.

If you enjoyed this post, you might like Sacrificing a Dream -- Would you do it?


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20 comments:

  1. Ah that closed door has caused many to doubt. But you have lovingly reminded us that God knows best. Stopping in from The Alabaster Jar Link Up...

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    1. Resting in his sovereignty with you!

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  2. Hi! Stopping by from The Alabaster Jar! This is a fabulous post! Just what I needed in fact! We are desperately searching for a house == and our situation makes it hard to find one that will fit all of the criteria. In fact, it will require a miracle! We found what we KNEW in our hearts was God's Answer -- it seemed to fit all the criteria! It was truly miraculous and the price was dropped $50,000 while we were standing in the house!! Only problem is that attracted the attention of quite a few others, and we were outbid on the house. :( I don't understand this Closed Door -- when I thought it was the door God was opening. Your fantastic post has reminded me to just TRUST and to WAIT on the Lord! Thanks so much for encouraging my heart today! ~Elizabeth of http://www.yestheyareallours.com

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    1. Oh, Elizabeth, your door literally slammed shut. We have to trust that "He says 'no' because He loves you." Who knows what could have come about because of that house -- God does. You may never know the rest of the story until eternity, but you can trust. Praying for God's perfect will for you today. Thanks so much for sharing.

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  3. I love this post, and sharing it today. It really helped me through some of the things I am going through. Bless you!

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  4. Ashley,

    God is so good to lead us to the truth we need right when we need it. It's little heavenly touches like this that remind me of how our precious Savior is "intimately acquainted with all our ways." Priceless! Blessings to you today.

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  5. Thanks for the post. I shared it on facebook. I have had a lot of doors slam in my face. It doesn't get easier with practice but I think the points you made will help a lot.

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  6. Stopping by from Life In the Comments. What a powerful truth! So often those doors would have led us down a path that would have deterred us from God's best. It's hard to see it now - but the big picture isn't done yet. Thank you for this wonderful post. Blessings from Croatia: Rosilind from A Little R & R: www.littlerandr.org

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  7. Thank you, again, this was so good. Have a wonderful day, Lori, and keep writing these wonderful posts. I am so glad that you linked up with me at WholeHearted Home.

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  12. Just found your blog. I know this post is old, but God has been asking me to trust by putting most of my children in school after homeschooling for 18 years. It is a big adjustment. Thanks for your wise words. http://rest-for-the-weary.blogpsot.com

    ReplyDelete
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    1. LLMom,
      As a former homeschool mom, I know the sleepness nights, heartfelt prayers, and deep soul-searching that goes into a decision like this. Please know my prayers are with you as you claim James 1:5. God bless.

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  13. Reading this really put a lot of things in perspective....Today I had the door slammed in my face (as several times before)....I cried & cried asking God why do this keep happening to me? I just knew this time the job was mine...Great pay, excellent benefits, & not just a job but a career.....I just couldn't understand why God will allow another door to be slammed in my face with EVERYTHING I'm up against: Going through a divorce, needing a home for me my youngest kids, behind in bills....I was really feeling down & my Faith in God was shattered...I begin to doubt him.....I may never know why, but I must TRUST HIS WILL!!!!

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    1. Sabrina,
      I'm sorry for your disappointment. Job hunting is SUCH a rollercoaster of emotions. I can confidently say that God is your advocate. He hears your cries, he is answering your prayers, and he will provide for you and your family. When you look back you'll be able to trace his hand of faithfulness even though you can't see it now. "Fear not. Only believe." I'm praying for you, Sister!

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  14. I REALLY REALLY needed this today. We've just moved to florida and I cannot find a job! Even the hospital volunteer services don't want me which absolutely crushed me because I am studying to become a nurse! I just have to continue to have faith, trust and believe that God will work everything out according to his plan!

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  15. Help me, there is no doors open at all for me at the moment and im scared to death. I prefer die rather than living in this dark room :(

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    Replies
    1. Father, I pray that you will show Hanna your plan for her life. Protect her from fear and discouragement and meet her every need as she seeks you. Draw her close to you and fulfill your purpose for her life. In the strong name of Jesus, inpray, Amen.

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