I’ve been thinking about open and closed doors lately. A comment I had posted several years ago popped up on my FB memories. Apparently, I had notice an abundance of church signs claiming, “When God closes one door, he opens another.”
I find this untrue in my life. In fact, my comment indicated that I was really grateful that God chose to keep some of the doors I tried to open closed tight.
Here’s my issue. I think this saying gives us too much license to do whatever feels best to us at the moment. And as I’ve said a million times, emotions are the worst of places to make decisions from.
Today I feel happy, I’ll make happy choices.
Tomorrow I may feel angry, or sad, or depressed, I’m not likely to make great choices on those days if I’m relying on my emotional state.
Now I’m not suggesting that we all become Spock from Star Trek and devoid ourselves of emotions. I’m saying that just because an opportunity presents itself, and we are feeling good about it, that does not make it a good decision. Or, if something is difficult that means we shouldn’t be doing it.
So how do we keep from becoming Weary by Wednesday, especially as single parents, or domestic violence survivors, when tough choices are required of us and we are on an emotional rollercoaster?
First, we need to be aligned with the Word of God, which means we need to be reading our Bibles. Regularly. Not just when we need to make a decision. When we are consistently reading and studying the Bible, we will know if decisions we are facing contradict what God says we should or shouldn’t do. And be clear…God is not opening those doors that do not align with his word.
Second, surround ourselves with Godly friends, mentors, teachers and counselors. Personally, I would be lost without this. When I was dealing with my abusive situation, I was an emotional train wreck. I had a foundation in the Word of God, but I was also the victim of many years of abuse and my abuser’s voice still lived in my head, making me uncertain of everything. I carefully navigated those years of healing with the help of wise counsel from people who had successfully navigated the road I was on and others who weren’t caught up in it and could see the way to safety and healing for me and my children.
Lastly, we have to do the hard work as we lean and trust in God. There was no way I could go five minutes without praying, and trusting Jesus to get me through each day. I wasn’t going to make it without him, and I knew it. I had to resist the temptation to pull the covers over my head and not do the day. I had to trust that if I put my feet on the floor, he was going to put his arm around me and walk me through to the next thing.
I can now look back in amazement at so many opportunities and decisions that were made, both for and against certain things. What if I had made the choice of my return to college without prayerful consideration? And what if I would have let my initial low GPA make me give up. How about if I had chosen that sweet talking guy with bad intentions and a reputation to match, instead of waiting for the Godly man intended for me? The one who not only blesses me each day, but was instrumental in the healing process of my children.
Life is too short to waste time going through every door that opens before us. Just because it feels good, doesn’t mean it is. Life is also too short not to push your way through a sticky door that may take more work than you want, but has all the blessing of God on the other side.
We need to stay strong, do the hard work and lean in on the one who know the plan.
“You said, ‘Listen now, and I will speak; I will question you, and you shall answer me.’ My ears had heard of you but now my eyes have seen you. (Job 42:4-5 NIV)
What was the most difficult door you opened, or had to walk away from? Thanks for sharing your Wednesday with me.