Controversial Christianity – God’s Will Is Revealed by Open Doors and Easy Access

I’ve heard it time and time again. I even used to believe it.


“You’ll know it’s God’s will if the door opens for you.” And… “If the Lord wanted you to do that it would be easier.”


Have you ever heard anything like that before? Have you believed it?


As Christians, we are on a journey. What we believed ten years ago may not be what we believe today. Not because our belief system has been diminished but because we are constantly growing.


The Word of God is our faith filter. What we believe has to biblically based, in context and rightly divided. God’s truth does not change but our understanding of it is ever evolving. Our discernment of the Word should be deeper with each passing year.


So, the question is not, what have we heard about walking in God’s will, but what does God’s Word say about it.


Today, we are going to examine open doors and easy access as an indication that we are walking in the will of God.


Is that really true? Is that what the Word of God really says?


It may be controversial, but today, we’re going to challenge the long-held belief that…

  1. If a door doesn’t open then it must not be God’s will.
  2. If a door opens then it must be yours to walk through.
  3. If it’s difficult then it must not be God’s will.

BELIEF: Open doors means it’s God’s will.


Truth:

  • “For a great and effective door has opened to me, and there are many adversaries.” 1 Corinthians 16:9
  • “Furthermore, when I came to Troas to preach Christ’s gospel, and a door was opened to me by the Lord” 2 Corinthians 2:12
  • “meanwhile praying also for us, that God would open to us a door for the word, to speak the mystery of Christ, for which I am also in chains” Colossians 4:3
  • Therefore we wanted to come to you—even I, Paul, time and again—but Satan hindered us.” 1 Thessalonians 2:18
  • This is why I have often been hindered from coming to you.” Romans 10:22
  • Now I do not want you to be unaware, brethren, that I often planned to come to you (but was hindered until now), that I might have some fruit among you also, just as among the other Gentiles.” Romans 1:13
Summed Up: The Bible does teach that God opens doors for us to accomplish His will. We are also given biblical precedence for praying for open doors for ministry. But we are also told that we have an enemy who prevents doors from opening. 

The danger is that we grow weary in the wait and mistake a closed door for a door that was shut by God, when in fact it was the enemy trying to derail our passionate pursuit to fulfill God’s will. Many Christians fail to fulfill their calling because they give up when they feel the door is closed.

~~~~~~~~~~

BELIEF: Every open door is ours to walk through.

Truth:
  •  For as we have many members in one body, but all the members do not have the same function, so we, being many, are one body in Christ, and individually members of one another.” Romans 12:4-5
  • There are diversities of gifts, but the same Spirit. There are differences of ministries, but the same Lord.” 1 Corinthians 12:4-5
  • For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand that we should walk in them.” Ephesians 2:10
  • Then he waited seven days, according to the time set by Samuel. But Samuel did not come to Gilgal; and the people were scattered from him. So Saul said, “Bring a burnt offering and peace offerings here to me.” And he offered the burnt offering.” 1 Samuel 13:8-9
  • But he said, “O my Lord, please send by the hand of whomever else You may send.” Exodus 4:13
  • “Before I formed you in the womb I knew you; Before you were born I sanctified you; I ordained you a prophet to the nations.” Jeremiah 1:5
Summed Up: God places a very specific call on each of our lives and it is uniquely designed for us and we are uniquely gifted for it. There are open doors all around us. They are doors God is opening. However, not every door is ours to walk through. 


Aaron could have mistaken his invitation by God to become a voice for Moses as  an invitation by God to deliver the children of Israel from Egypt. But he understood the open door he was to walk through was not the same open door God was calling Moses to walk through. He was to assist the one who was called to deliver, not take over his job.


We’ve all stood at the cross roads of a decision we had to make and faced two or more doors we could walk through. The question is often not whether we should walk through the door, but rather, which one is ours to walk through.

As we recognize the fact that God is opening doors all around us, we must be careful to discern where or not they are ours to walk through or someone else’s. Going through someone else’s door means we are taking on someone else’s calling.

~~~~~~~~~~

BELIEF: We will know it’s God’s will because it will be easy.

Truth: 
  • We are hard-pressed on every side, yet not crushed; we are perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed— always carrying about in the body the dying of the Lord Jesus, that the life of Jesus also may be manifested in our body. For we who live are always delivered to death for Jesus’ sake, that the life of Jesus also may be manifested in our mortal flesh.” 2 Corinthians 4:8-11
  • From the Jews five times I received forty stripes minus one. Three times I was beaten with rods; once I was stoned; three times I was shipwrecked; a night and a day I have been in the deep; in journeys often, in perils of waters, in perils of robbers, in perils of my owncountrymen, in perils of the Gentiles, in perils in the city, in perils in the wilderness, in perils in the sea, in perils among false brethren; in weariness and toil, in sleeplessness often, in hunger and thirst, in fastings often, in cold and nakedness— besides the other things, what comes upon me daily: my deep concern for all the churches. Who is weak, and I am not weak? Who is made to stumble, and I do not burn with indignation? If I must boast, I will boast in the things which concern my infirmity.” 2 Corinthians 11:24-30
  • that no one should be shaken by these afflictions; for you yourselves know that we are appointed to this.” 1 Thessalonians 3:3
  • But the Lord said to him, “Go, for he is a chosen vessel of Mine to bear My name before Gentiles, kings, and the children of Israel. For I will show him how many things he must suffer for My name’s sake.” Acts 9:15-16
  • Resist him, steadfast in the faith, knowing that the same sufferings are experienced by your brotherhood in the world. But may the God of all grace, who called us to His eternal glory by Christ Jesus, after you have suffered a while, perfect, establish, strengthen, and settle you.” 1 Peter 5:9-10
Summed Up: Contrary to cultural Christianity, we are not called to Easy Street. When we know God has called us to something it doesn’t mean that it will be easy. Many Christians grow weary in the wait and quit before they ever fulfill their calling and I believe that is often because we are taught that if God has called us to something that things will just fall in place.

Paul never thought like that. Peter didn’t feel that way. None of the martyrs ever thought that. None of the faithful fathers of the faith allowed comfort to be a determining factor as to whether or not they were in God’s will. They filtered God’s call through the Word, the leading of the Holy Spirit and the obvious God-ordained circumstances set before them.

It’s not easy to face persecution, financial pressures, a lack of basic needs such as food and clothing, a battery of beatings and years in jail. But he suffered those things because He was in God’s will… not because he wasn’t.

It may be controversial, but if someone tells you that you can’t be in God’s will because it’s not His will for you to suffer or go through tough times then please be assured from God’s Word that you are suffering with the best of them and as long as God has confirmed His will to you than please sweet friend…keep pressing on!

Conclusion: It’s controversial to say that not every open door is yours to walk through. It’s controversial to challenge the concept of comfortable Christianity. But when God gifts you and calls you to fulfill His will, He rarely calls you to what is easy or convenient. He calls you to live beyond yourself and depend on Him.

In the younger years of my Christianity, the Lord used to just place my feet in the steps He called me to take. It seemed so easy. It was like all I had to do was ask Jesus to open a door and I would walk through it and everything would fall in place. 

But as God grows us up, He doesn’t always speak to us the same way. Following His lead isn’t always as simple as it once was. He stretches us. He tests our faith and He tests our character.

My fear is that many are forsaking their call mid-stream because the pressure is too much. Or perhaps they’re walking through someone else’s door and wondering why the feel like they aren’t supposed to be there.

So, here are some questions you can ask yourself to help determine whether or not you are walking in the will of God:

1. What are my spiritual gifts?

2. What do I feel like God is calling me to?

3. What are the God-given passions of my heart?

4. What doors are opening for me?

5. Am I sure that door is for me or is it for someone else and I just wish it was for me?

6. Am I prepared to face difficult days and uncomfortable circumstances to fulfill His calling on my life?

7. Will I cave under the pressure or am I strengthening myself in the Word so I can stand long and strong?

8. Am I willing to endure hardship as a good soldier or would I just prefer to be pampered?

9. When I see an open door is really for someone else, am I willing to move out of the way and let them walk through it?

10. Do I believe that God’s will means that He will open a door for me, that it’s not possible that it could be for someone else and that everything will just fall in place once I walk through it?

What do you believe about knowing and following God’s will? Have you been told that God’s will means everything will be easy? Has anyone ever tried to shake you from what you know God has called you to because finances were getting tight or your circumstances were getting a bit difficult?






16 Comments

  1. I do believe that if a door shuts (symbolically.) It should be a cause for us to ponder and pray about.
    Maybe it is a way Satan is using to thwart us, or maybe it is the Lord in that it's not His will for us to do this work.
    I heard Beth Moore say once “Hard does not mean bad.” I believe this to be very true. In caring for my parents—-for most of my adult life—-it has been hard, but not a bad thing; because I know it has been God's will for my life.

  2. Good post today Steph! Hugs and blessings, Cindy

  3. Loving this series Stephanie!! Blessings, Madalyn

  4. Hi Annette,

    I completely agree. Sometimes a closed door is God's will for us, but so many time we assume a shut door means it's time to pack up and change course or that we should never go that way in the first place.

    Following God's leading through the Holy Spirit and His Word is definitely the best filter for discernment of His will.

    Thank yo SO much for sharing that! SO true!!

    Big blessings to you! 🙂

  5. Cindy,

    Thanks so much for the encouraging words, my friend! 🙂

  6. Madalyn,

    Thanks so much for joining in on the series. You are such a blessing! 🙂

  7. Steph, I am so grateful for the clear distinctions you made in this post and backing up those distinctions with Scripture. As you well said, we have all thought that if a door closes it must not be God's will, or it's time to throw in the towel, and likewise, if the door opens, it must be God's will to walk through it. This demonstrates just how essential it is for us to walk closely with Him and seek His face. To stand firm on His Truths and not how things around us “appear.”

  8. Shelly,

    Thanks for sharing that! Abiding in Him and seeking His will is the only way we can be sure we are walking in the steps He desires for us! Great truth!
    🙂

  9. Wonderful, provocative post. I'll be following.

  10. Patricia,
    I'm SO glad you're joining in! God's Word just sheds light on every area of our lives! He's SOOO good and His Word is always true! How blessed we are to serve the Living God! 🙂

  11. This is such an awesome post, Stephanie. Just wonderful. Years ago, two friends and I were having lunch. One friend mentioned that she thought she had disobeyed God when she actually thought she was obeying because, in all her previous obedience, there was peace and all things went smoothly. However, this time, things seemed to fall apart. The other friend and I could not convince her that many times, obedience is followed by chaos. I don't know that she ever believed it. Not every decision to obey goes smoothly. Thank you for doing this awesome series. It's wonderful!

  12. Lynn,

    What a common story! It's so easy to think that we have stepped out of God's will when the road gets rough. Maybe we think that way because of something we've been taught, but I think a lot of people think that because when things do get rough, we long to be sure we're in God's will.

    I love how you said, “Not every decision to obey goes smoothly.”

    Love you, my friend! 🙂

  13. Stephanie,

    i am loving this brilliant series! Very Much Appreciated and I wish everyone would read it!!!

    Thank You!!

    Dolores

  14. Delores,

    Thanks so much for your sweet words! There's so many misunderstandings about what we believe, but our God does not leave us wondering… He gives us His Word and shows us what is really true.

    Blessings to you!! 🙂

  15. Great job busting these myths with the Word of God!

    I believe prayer is the best key to open and walk through doors.

  16. Rachel,

    Thanks for popping over and commenting.

    It always goes back to the basics doesn't it. Abiding in Christ through time in His Word and time in prayer. So simple yet we often skip right past it. 🙂

    Blessings to you!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *