Have you ever felt like you were living your life to the fullest and then out of nowhere a door slams shut?
This door was part of your life. It was a familiar. A door you had walked through over and over. But then one day, BAM it shuts. And when that door closed, it rattled your whole life. I’ve been there.
I didn’t understand what was going on.
I was leading a ministry — a growing one! I loved those I was working with. Loved the church I was at. It was comfortable. The team I worked with was great. I knew I could count on them for events and extra activities. I ran hard. There was much to do and I enjoyed every minute.
Then in a flash, in a set of unforeseen and weird circumstances, that season ended. God closed that door quickly. The ministry was gone. The church was gone. The door slammed shut!
I ranted. I cried. I questioned. I didn’t understand. I doubted who I was. What I was called to do. I wanted the door to open again so I could be comfortable. I wanted my routine.
Learning from Noah.
In Genesis 6 & 7, God asks Noah to build a boat. That’s pretty crazy in and of itself. Of course, Noah followed through. He did everything God asked although he’d never seen rain. Noah was in a season of building for 120 years. He was a carpenter building a large boat to keep eight people alive during the world’s flood.
The season of building ended when God called Noah and his family into the boat as it started to rain. Have you ever wondered what Noah thought when the rain began? If he thinks anything like me it would have went something like,
God, I’m not ready for this. What if this thing called an ark doesn’t float? What if it’s only a little shower and we look like fools? I still hard work to do before we set sail. Lord, maybe I heard you wrong. Maybe we should just exit the boat and see what happens.”
Scripture tells us “then God shut the door!” I’m sure I would have been freaking out. Maybe even having a panic attack over the fact that I was stuck in a situation with no way out. Mercy – how I love being in control. When God closes the door it is a gentle reminder of how little we are in control.
God had to shut the door.
Maybe in Noah’s case, he was fixing to drag out the life boats and try to do it on his own so God had to intervene. Or maybe Noah was concerned about all those that were going to be lost in the flood and could’t bare to shut the door himself. I’m not sure — but what I’ve learned in my life is that sometimes God has to slam the door shut to get me where He wants me.
Had God not slammed the door shut in my own life, I wouldn’t have been forced to seek Him for what was to come. I would have kept on living in the crazy hectic chaos of days building what I knew to build.
God closing my door forced me into a new season. I wasn’t where He needed me to be so he arranged the move. He needed me available to be used by Him in different opportunities that were to come.
Shut doors come in many fashions.
When my door slammed, it was a door of ministry that led me to a new way of life. A way not marked by hustle and long days, but full of grace and fresh air. There are other areas of our lives where God often shuts doors to move us where he needs us.
Have you ever had God shut the door for you? Did you panic?
Did it lead you somewhere new?