Tuesday, July 03, 2007

A Shut Door

God is surrounded by mystery. Yes, God has revealed Himself to us, and as a result we can understand certain aspects of who He is. We cannot understand God in His entirety, there is no way our finite minds could understand it. God's ways are not our ways, so there will always be a mystery about God.

When we ignore this fact and put God in a box so we can understand Him we miss out on the opportunity to experience Him in our lives. One way this is seen is the common belief that God opens "doors" to reveal His will to us. By doing this we miss out on experiencing so much of what God wants to do through our lives.

Many times in the Bible God didn't open doors for people to go through. One might even concluded that God revealed His will and then locked the door. God told Moses to go to Pharaoh and demand that Israel be sent free. Moses went, but his task was not easy. Obstacle after obstacle were put in Moses' way. There was Pharaoh's hard heart and Israel's unbelief. Given our thinking Moses would have given up after the water into blood didn't convince Pharaoh. Moses could have very easily concluded that God had shut the door and that he had not interpreted the burning bush correctly. Instead it was Moses commitment to God's will that enabled him, along with all the Israelites and Egyptians, to experience God's power.

Here is another example. God crowns Saul as king, but the Philistines still control Israel. Saul's first duty is to gather an army to kick the Philistines out. An army of 3,000 is raised. 2,000 stay with Saul and 1,000 go with Jonathan. Jonathan takes his 1,000 men and begins to attack the Philistine outposts. They experience success. Jonathan's men had so much success that the Philistines send in 30,000 men along with horses and chariots. Israel had 3,000 men and two swords and no spears. Out manned and out gunned all but 600 men run into the hills slamming shut the door in the face of Saul and Jonathan. This is when we say, "I guess it is not God's will for me to fight the Philistines." That is what Saul did, but Jonathan took his sword and his armor bearer and went and picked a fight with the Philistines. No open door, just an understanding of God's will, and as a result the Israelites and the Philistines experienced God's power.

James 1:12 reads; God blesses the people who patiently endure testing. Afterward they will receive the crown of life that God has promised to those who love him (NLT). An open door is no more an indication of God's will than a closed one. We experience God's blessing when we do what we know God's will to be, even though all the circumstances are against us. We have been taught to give up too soon, and the result has been that we have missed the blessings God has wanted to give us.

Stop waiting for God to open the door before you take a step of faith. Start moving toward the wall and trust God to get you to where you need to go. It is through this act of faith that we will be able to experience God's power in our lives.

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