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Christian Living

Spiritual Life

Closed Doors

CBN.com -- It was a beautiful Sunday afternoon when a friend and I had picked up sandwiches from Subway. We decided to eat them in the parking lot while we waited to meet with someone. Our car was parked against a curbed barrier which separated us from the empty parking lot of a closed Hobby Lobby craft store. Within the twenty minutes it took to eat our sandwiches, there were at least fifteen people who tried going through the closed doors of Hobby Lobby. Each person would drive into the parking lot, get out of their car, walk to the door, then have to turn around and leave. You would think sooner or later someone would have realized that the store was closed. Clearly they were more focused on what they wanted inside and, as a result, were oblivious to their surroundings. If they had paid closer attention there is a higher likelihood they would have kept driving.   

After watching this happen over and over again, something hit me. It was the idea that we too have attempted to walk through closed doors, doors we needed to avoid, but were insistent on trying to open anyway.

I myself have come to see the value of being very cautious about which doors to open and which doors to keep closed. Unfortunately, it often takes us learning by trial and error before finally grasping the importance of following God’s wisdom over our emotions. When you base your decisions on your emotions you will waste valuable time that could have been used on something worthwhile. To combat our emotions, we must follow after God for He is the one who always leads us to wisdom or like Job 28:23 put it, “God is the only one who knows the way to wisdom.”(CEV)
 
I know of a situation that applies directly to the subject of closed doors. In this case it was a relational issue for me, which would have never been an issue if I had used wisdom. You see, there was this girl whom I desired to know on a personal level. But instead of us becoming better acquainted, she began to avoid me completely. There is no doubt in my mind I forced things into motion. The reason I experienced a negative reaction was entirely my fault since in the beginning I did not follow the Lord’s guidance. I should have waited on Him to give me the green light before racing ahead.

The situation did not become a problem until a close friend intervened. This friend meant well by encouraging her to speak with me with one day. Yet neither she nor I were prepared for casual conversation. The brief interaction was extremely awkward. Then to make matters worse I had my friend give her a brief letter shortly after in hopes she would see me in a different light. Still every good intention backfired.

For two years, I agonized over what had taken place. The wisest decision I made was to back off and stop forcing my way. It eventually paid off because God granted me the opportunity to personally apologize for my actions. Fortunately everything ended on positive terms with no hard feelings between us. The greatest lesson I learned is that when God doesn’t open a door in my life I have to move forward. Because by trying to force closed doors open, we may never experience God’s best for us.
Proverbs 16:25 is honest in saying, “There is a way that seems right to a man and appears straight before him, but at the end of it is the way of death.”(AMP)

Reasonably so, there is no life in death, or any fruit. Through our vain attempts to satisfy the desire within we can get tangled up in things that seem harmless, but are really distractions from the successful path God’s laid out.

Musician Glenn Kaiser wrote, I’m fond of saying that it’s not the “fifth floor” of our spiritual lives that the devil is concerned with, but rather the foundations. When these are not rightly laid, or if they are neglected or forgotten, we often end up on tangents, off on side-tracks that indeed seem exciting in the moment... but fruitless and perhaps even damaging in the long-term.”

 

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Byron Clay Bohnert’s writings inspire people to look at life through the eyes of Faith, a perspective that oftentimes helps us focus on what’s really important and forego those that are not. On January 16, 2009, Byron took up new residence with our Lord in heaven. During his 29 years on this earth, he enjoyed sharing and encouraging people through Devotions he wrote for CBN.com and other publications and his personal witness just loving Christ, his family, his church and people he never met.

 

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