You’ve heard the phrase: When God closes one door, God always opens another. I’m not sure where the statement comes from–it’s not in the Bible. And I don’t think it’s even true.
There are so many trite bumper-sticker theologies we can quote about closed doors:
- When God closes a door, don’t keep hitting your head against it.
- When God closes a door, maybe God wants YOU to open another door.
- Actually, maybe God had nothing to do with closing that door.
We all know how difficult it is, when we look to God for help and we end up on a dead-end street.We’ve all been there—and we’ll be there again.
It helps to remember that just because it seems like a NO answer, it doesn’t mean “NO, you’re a bad person.” Or, “NO, you don’t deserve it.” NO may simply mean no. Sometimes we have to figure out another way. Sometimes we have to accept a different answer.
When God, or life says NO to us, or when things, people, or situations don’t go according to our plans, we might think that God has failed us. Or worse, we think that God doesn’t care—or that God doesn’t even notice.
But the truth is that God, simply by virtue of being God, cannot ignore us. If God’s nature is unlimited, unconditional love, then it is impossible for God to stop caring about us or to ignore us.
Yes, sometimes God says NO—and sometimes life says NO, because that’s how life is. But just because God or life may not give us everything we want, it does not mean that God has failed us. Not at all.
What it probably means is that we don’t understand God, or that we don’t see the full picture, or maybe that we have to keep trying.
Even when we may not recognize God’s presence, we are always assured of God’s love and attention. That is how/who God is.
Thanks be to God. Amen.