“They went to Phrygia, and then on through the region of Galatia. Their plan was to turn west into Asia province, but the Holy Spirit blocked that route. So they went to Mysia and tried to go north to Bithynia, but the Spirit of Jesus wouldn’t let them go there either. Proceeding on through Mysia, they went down to the seaport Troas.That night Paul had a dream: A Macedonian stood on the far shore and called across the sea, ‘Come over to Macedonia and help us!’ The dream gave Paul his map. We went to work at once getting things ready to cross over to Macedonia. All the pieces had come together. We knew now for sure that God had called us to preach the good news to the Europeans’.” Acts 16:6-10 (MSG)
We go to a lot of effort to avoid closed doors. We create automatic doors that open when we get close. We walk through revolving doors that never really close but keep moving in a circular direction. Then, we create buttons that we can push so that we never have to face a closed door. Yet, closed doors are the very things that stop us.
When Paul and his companions were trying to go to the province of Asia to preach the gospel, they faced a closed door. Plan A wasn’t working. It made logical sense; compassion for the people of Asia was on their heart. Yet, they faced a closed door. They had to come up with Plan B and decided to turn north; yet another closed door greeted them. Many times in life, we face closed doors. We come up with Plan A and resort to Plan B when it fails. But, what do you do when Plan B fails too? Most people are not accustomed to coming up with Plan C. But, maybe there is a different way to look at it. Maybe our lists of plans that seem to be failing are simply a redirection by the God who is compelling us. We seek him, serve him, and try to follow his will. When we face the closed door, it seems that all is lost for good. The closed door is not final; it is merely a redirection. It took two closed doors for Paul to get to Macedonia. Paul’s calling to preach the gospel was not over when he faced the closed doors, and neither is yours. When you face the closed doors, and you don’t understand, allow God to take you by the hand to the place He destined for you, even if it is not part of your plan. Instead of ranting at God for a change in your plans, thank God for the closed doors. They mean that bigger and better things are ahead.
Scripture taken from THE MESSAGE. Copyright © 1993, 1994, 1995, 1996, 2000, 2001, 2002. Used by permission of NavPress Publishing Group.