Wednesday, April 23, 2014

On open and closed doors

On my farm growing up, we had a screen door on our back porch. We would enter through this door and try not to let it slam shut, which would take us inside the enclosed back porch. 

On one end, in a corner, was this very small but tall triangular closet made out of whitewashed bead board with a tall skinny door in the middle with a latch. In this tiny closet would hang my dad's work overalls. The ones for summer that looked like striped denim and the ones for winter which were insulated. 

Next to this closet was the door that took us from the porch into the house. It wasn't really an insulated door. More like just a regular door with the top half being windows we could see through.

Doors keep the heat out and the cold in. They keep the heat in and the cold out. They form boundaries for us where we need them. 

Usually with physical doors, we can control when we open and shut them, at least that is what we hope. We hope that our door isn't plowed through by some unwelcome intruder.

Rarely do we want a door to remain closed that we want open. Especially if we are dreamers.

Lately it seems my family is having encounters with doors. My husband walked through a new door two weeks ago into a new job. A new career from Engineering into Marketing. He waited at least three years for that door to open. (many more actually) Many prayers were pleaded for a door like this to open. It finally opened and much rejoicing has been happening over this open door!

My son has been waiting nine months since college graduation for a door to open for a full time job with benefits. Next week, he will joyfully walk through that door that has been prayed for. The wait has not been easy. We are grateful.

But, what about those doors that we pray for that don't seem to open when we want them to, or maybe not at all?

Like the healing door that we've been praying for a loved one or ourselves for months.

Or, maybe you've been praying for a door to open for a new job or a new relationship or a new house.

We are created to desire new and adventurous things, so it can be disheartening when we badly want a door to open and it doesn't seem to budge. 

The hinges are rusty and the door is crusty and it seems completely immovable.

In a certain way, I've been behind a proverbial closed door for three years. The door to my dream of attending a specific graduate school has continued to remain shut. I've asked lots of questions, grieved, and have finally come to peace with it.

My husband's new job is right where we are, so we won't be moving to the Northwest, near that desired school any time soon.

But, finally, I can see a tiny crack opening in the dingy old door that's been seemingly blocking my path. The one I've put claw marks in trying to make open through my sheer will power.

I've had to look for the tiny opening. The sliver of light.

Instead of staring at the closed door in disbelief and anger, I've had to look for the tiny opening that might provide the consolation.

Doors can be friends or foes depending on what side of them we are on and what side we'd rather be on.

May we continue to pray for open doors where we'd like them. 
May we keep dreaming.

But, may we keep looking for the tiny speck of light that might already be shining through that closed door that might give us guidance and consolation on our journey.

Linking up today with Holley Gerth's Coffee for Your Heart and with Beth at Three Word Wednesday.


  1. It seems my family has been dealing with more than averaged closed doors lately. Thanks for the reminder to watch for light in the cracks!

    1. Oh, thank you for your comment! And, may you, too, be able to see the stream of light coming through! Blessings to you!

  2. Thank you for this lovely and timely post, Anne! I loved the pictures you included - very fitting. Yes, it is my prayer that the Lord will open the necessary door(s) I need to walk through. What He opens no man can close, and what He closes no man can open. We can trust Him! God bless you.

    1. Ashley, thanks for this! I love that scripture and thought about including it in the post. So many times I think I know best, when all I need is to trust that my God is guiding me.

  3. Someone once said that if a door closes, to look for a window ;). I maintain, that if a door remains closed, maybe I need to turn around and look for a door that may be behind me ;)--I think that's sort of like looking for a crack of light. It's so difficult to patiently wait or wander the hallways, but it's where my growth tends to happen. Sometimes, I'm so sure that I'm read to go through that door--but I'm not. I need the growth first.

  4. I so agree with you! I do think that most of the growth happens when we are wandering the hallways! I love that! Thanks for visiting and for your kind comment! Blessings!


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