Let me be the first to say that I am not a huge fan of disappointment or rejection. I mean let’s be honest. Who is? It can be the most frustrating feeling in the world, especially when it involves other believers. And the hardest part is accepting that rejection or disappointment for what it is and moving on because if you’re anything like me, you love to have inward fits like you’re 10 years old again.
And that’s just the internal conflict. That doesn’t even begin to touch how you’re supposed to react to all the other people involved. When do you fight for what you want vs. seek peace and pursue it? How do you forgive the people who unintentionally hurt you? And it’s so easy to say you are able to forgive until God’s gives you a test asking you to demonstrate that you can. Let me explain what I mean.
I recently auditioned for one of the worship teams at my church. Originally, I was asked to attend their rehearsals while serving in the children’s ministry in order to grow in my confidence and ability to lead worship. I was so excited, and if you know anything about me, you know that I dedicate my time and efforts to commitments with an “All or Nothing” attitude. I started attending the rehearsals and have begun leading my own worship set in the children’s ministry. It’s been a great growing experience and I’m very thankful that God is using this time to prepare me for whatever plans He’s orchestrating.
Fast forward 3 months, and here I am writing. Over time, I was starting to feel confused about where exactly I was serving in the music ministry at church. I had a lot of questions and I didn’t understand the entire process of joining the worship team or what to expect next, so I decided to reach out to the worship leader to gain a better understanding of what was going on. In response, I was told to take more time to focus on serving in the children’s ministry so that I could continue growing in confidence.
There were so many layers to this situation that I had a hard time processing how I actually felt about it. I think it’s safe to say that I was initially disappointed, and to be honest, I was actually shocked. A part of me felt like I made the situation more complicated in my head than it needed to be. But honestly, what’s new? Either way, I could sit here and list all these reasons describing how I feel, but the bottom line is that my feelings were hurt.
I had so many internal conflicts going on all at once. As long as I’m serving within the church, why did it matter where or who I was serving with? Was it worth it to ask clarifying questions to figure out what was meant? These are just two out of the many questions I had. I was so consumed by my own thoughts that I wasn’t even able to find peace when I prayed about the situation. I didn’t know what to do. But after a day or two of taking time to process everything, I finally felt like the Lord was just telling me to let it go.
It wasn’t until I prayed about it again that I began to understand the situation and was reminded of what a closed door looked like. God was clearly shutting this door in this point in time, and after realizing that, I immediately felt better. And instead of feeling confusion, disappointment, discontentment, and all the other emotions I was feeling, I was able to feel thankful.
Yes, it hurt to not get exactly what I wanted, but I was reminded of Romans 5:3-5:
But we also glory in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance, perseverance character, and character, hope. And hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit, who has been given to us.
I absolutely love that scripture. God uses closed doors to strengthen us so that we can face harder times later. He uses them to improve our spiritual endurance. He doesn’t use them to shame us, and it’s a sign that He loves us just like it says in Hebrews 12:5-11. He uses closed doors to produce a harvest of peace and righteousness, and that is more valuable than any earthly thing you can think of.
When God closes a door, we can rest in His Will and in His grace. We can rest in the fact that He’s working everything out for our good and that He is redirecting us towards something better. We know this is true because He says it all over His Word (Jeremiah 29:11, Isaiah 49: 3-4).
But if that’s not enough, a closed door is also a sign of God’s protection. We don’t know the temptation or hardships we would encounter had we gone through doors that God wants shut. But because He closed it, we can rest. We can find peace because we know that He is ultimately doing everything possible to take care of us. In this moment and in this season, we are exactly where God wants us to be. We are walking and living out His best for our lives, so we shouldn’t get so caught up with why God closed the door although I do write a little bit about it here.
Anyways, I say all of that to say that God’s provision is out of this world. I mean He really does have it all figured out to the point that He provides exactly what we need when we need it even during times when we don’t know that we need it. From our life plans, to our community involvements, down to the minute details. I love how personal He is. It just takes commitment to an entirely new level.
So what are some doors that God has closed in your life? Have you thanked Him for His provision?