Faith Enough to Walk Through Open Doors
Apparently, I giggle when I'm nervous, when I'm scared and when I'm happy. I've been doing a lot of giggling lately, and it's all because God keeps opening doors that I wasn't totally expecting. Now in each of those circumstances, I was praying for the door to open, and I was hoping the door would open. But, when the door did open wide for one of my prayers, my nervous giggle came bubbling to the surface. I have to wonder if God is grinning a little extra too as He watches me walk in faith – or at least try to.
Here's a little glimpse into what I've been talking to God about lately and how He has responded.
Prayer #1 - Lord, I'd love to have a meaningful connection with someone this week. Guide me to who I can encourage or befriend. Show me who You want me to connect with. (Oh, and, I know you know that in my heart I'd love to sit down and catch up with ___, but I want your will, Lord, not my selfish desires.)
Amazingly, within 15-20 minutes, a gal reached out to me and asked if I might have a little time to sit down and talk with her in the next few days. I was thrilled! God answered my prayer so quickly and in such an obvious way. (Why am I always a bit surprised when God does that?) Can you guess who the gal was?
Yep! It was the one I had selfishly hoped to spend time with. Wow! ...and on top of that, God orchestrated our complicated schedules so that we both had the same window of time available on one particular afternoon. This precious hour spent catching up with a dear friend was extra sweet because I had the comfort of knowing I'd not been selfish with my time. Even so, God blessed me with my heart's desire!
Prayer #2 - After sitting in a meeting with colleagues, I had a nudge to connect with one of the speakers after the workshop concluded. (My thought was that I could offer my future help with their ministry.) As the excitement of that possibility grew in my mind, I decided I'd talk with her at the close of the day. As the meetings continued and the time passed, God nudged me to put the idea into His hands. So I prayed. "Lord, if this is a good fit and the right time, help me to connect with this gal after our meetings conclude. If not, I’ll leave it alone."
Soon the closing prayer was shared. When I looked up to head across the room, the speaker was no where to be found. I even checked in the hallway. Nope, not there either. She was simply gone, and my answer was clear. I'm not certain if God was saying "Not now." or "Not ever," but I was totally convinced that God didn't want me going down that path. .
...and one final prayer...the one that brought on my nervous giggles…
Prayer #3 – This fall, God appeared to be opening a door for me to connect with a relative I hadn't seen in over 40 years. There were no bad feelings or issues separating us. He just chose to live a quiet life, and we'd just not personally connected. Our only communication over my adult years was to exchange Christmas greetings by mail.
There were now reports that he might be showing possible signs of dementia, and I am one of the few family members left to look to his interests. Not really knowing what to do, I asked several people to pray for him, for me and the possibility that we may someday be able to connect.
So fast forwarding to today…
The time and circumstances had come together to bring me to the point that I needed to reach out and see if we could connect. With a bit of fear and trembling, I found a quiet spot to make the phone call. I was greeted warmly, and I was able to keep my thoughts together for a bit of casual conversation. Then, I got to the point. "We'll be traveling through your area tomorrow, and we wondered if we could stop for a visit."
Now, at this point, I must backtrack 2-3 years ago when I made a similar call, and he told me he was busy and unavailable. Perhaps he was, or perhaps he just didn't want visitors. I'll never know, but today God opened a new door in my life, and we were invited to make a visit. This open door is truly beyond all my hopes and dreams. (I had totally prepared my heart for rejection.)
As I wait, my mind hasn't stopped swirling in amazement and with a bit of trepidation. How did God bring this amazing set of circumstances together? How awkward will the visit be? Will he know me? Will he remember I called? Should we try to help? What are you requiring of me, Lord? Is he excited and nervous to see me too?
All those answers are unknown, but God answered one of my most unexpected, yet hoped for prayers. I’d love to see him before he goes to be with you, Lord. If there is any way for me to see him, to hug him, to share a moment of my love with him. Whatever you know is best for him, Lord. Help me to trust You.
Pinch me! This dream - beyond my wildest dreams or hopes just a few months ago. It appears that God has swung this particular door wide open, and with a little fear, trembling and nervous giggling, I’m trusting Him to guide my steps and help me to walk through this new door in my faith journey.
Can you relate? Do you ever pray for God's will and then end up a bit off kilter or surprised when He answers you? Do you get mad or disillusioned when His answer is No or Wait? I think we all have times when we are afraid to ask God for our heart’s desires. We are afraid to dream. We don’t want to risk being disappointed. But, what if we ask, trust and follow God’s lead? What freedom we could all find in accepting the moments when God’s says No, as well as, when He says Yes! We really can trust Him to know what’s best.
It all boils down to surrender. When we are willing to surrender to His will and trust that He is more than able and willing to open all the doors that we need to walk through, we can find peace and rest in Him. May we each have the faith to walk through the door God opens for us today and in the days to come.
“Those who know your name trust in you, for you, Lord, have never forsaken those who seek you.” Psalm 9:10