“Maybe The Door Isn’t Supposed To Open”
Bo Wagner is pastor of the Cornerstone Baptist Church of Mooresboro, NC, a widely traveled evangelist, and the author of several books. His books are available on Amazon and at www.wordofhismouth.com
I truly enjoy the new church building we built just a few years ago. It has given us plenty of room to grow, areas to fellowship, and offices that do not double as hallways. Coming from our old building of 4000 square feet that used to be a fish camp, our 10,000 square foot facility feels like heaven. The Hope Center, our new gymnasium/family life center beside it, has made things even nicer for us still.
But all of that square footage has come with a whole bunch of one particular item: doors. Between Sunday school rooms and offices and nurseries and different wings, we have doors doors and more doors. And one of those particular doors, the door to the office wing, became a reminder recently of a great spiritual truth.
The particular door in question, for a good while, had not latched properly. But a thing so small truly does fall way down on my priority list of things to fix. So for many months my children learned that they could walk down the hallway and, without ever even turning the handle, push the door open and come back into the office area.
But then I found myself with a rare few minutes with nothing pressing to do, and my mind for some reason gravitated toward that door. I keep a tool set in my office, and so, with a small chiseling tool, a screwdriver, and five minutes time, I had the door working perfectly.
It was then that we had our unexpected fun for the day.
A few minutes after the door was fixed I heard a firm “thud.” Then another one. Just as it dawned on me what the noise was, the handle turned, and my daughter came into the office and in bewilderment blurted out “Dad! There’s something wrong with the door!”
Let the irony of that sink in.
For all the months that the handle would not latch and the door could be pushed open by anyone at any time, no one complained that there was something wrong with the door. But within five minutes of it not automatically opening at the slightest push, someone proclaimed that it was defective.
The door was, and is, working just as it is supposed to. Doors are designed to be able to be opened at times, and not to be able to be opened at others. They are designed to be either locked or unlocked. They are designed to allow access at some times, and restrict access at others.
And this is where God immediately focused my mind on a spiritual truth concerning the will of God. Our human nature always wants what we want when we want it. But the Creator, the God of heaven and earth, often “closes doors to us.” Sometimes He does so by saying “Thou shalt not.” Other times He does so by arranging circumstances in such a way that we cannot do what we try to do. Sometimes, as in Acts 16:7, the Holy Spirit speaks to our hearts so firmly that we know God is telling us no.
Joseph, unjustly imprisoned over a false accusation of rape, doubtless prayed for God to open the door and set him free, but for a very long time that prayer went unanswered. Mary, watching her son crucified, doubtless prayed for God the Father to intervene, but He did not do so. David wanted to build God a temple, but God reserved that honor for his son Solomon instead.
People often claim that they prayed, but God did not answer their prayer. What they really mean is “I prayed, and God did not say yes.” You see, “yes” is an answer, but so is “no” and so is “not right now.”
It may be that there is a desire of your heart that God has not yet said yes to. If that is the case, remember that the door is not broken; it is working just exactly as it is intended to.
Pastor Wagner can be contacted by email at firstname.lastname@example.org