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Here's Some Encouragement for the Closed Doors

I recently was reading John chapter 3, the context surrounding the famous verse John 3:16, and a new verse stuck out to me. I had it underlined in my Bible, but man, it just fascinated me and hit home a little harder than I expected. John 3:27 says,

"A person can only receive what is given to them from heaven."

John is saying this to his followers regarding baptism. He reminded them that everything he has, including his ministry, is from the Lord. And it got me thinking, this idea that we can only receive something if it is from the Lord.

Maybe the reason why a relationship or friendship isn't working out is because it's not from the Lord. Maybe the reason why a dream hasn't happened is because the Lord has something better in store. Maybe the reason why you haven't gotten the promotion or job is because there's something else the Lord wants to do with your time. This isn't always the case, so please don't hear that, but I know that there are definitely some times that things haven't worked out because God had a better thing waiting for me. There are so many different scenarios, but the main point is:

Our God is looking out for us. And when we are walking with Him, when we let Him take control of our life, we'll begin to see some doors close and others open. Because we can only receive what the Father wants to place in our lives.

I have such confidence that the Lord has good plans for each and every one of our lives, but I know how easy it is to feel continually discouraged when our lives aren't looking the way we thought it would look or when door after door is shut. I know how defeating it is when the plans or dreams we have are met with a "no" or a "not right now", but I'm also learning that those answers are God's redirection. Sometimes, God doesn't allow us to receive a good thing because He has a better thing in store, and that is hard to wrap our minds around sometimes, but it is so true.

Maybe, instead of becoming defeated when we experience a "no" or closed doors, we need to reframe our perspective. Instead of feeling like we're missing out on something, we need to remember that God is protecting or providing for us in some way we don't see yet. Maybe this is the reminder we need to step back and refocus on where He is leading us, and lean into whatever He has for us right now. Or maybe it's simply our cue to pursue the Lord and bring Him whatever emotions we're feeling right now.

I'm beginning to pray, "Lord, if this is Your will, then let it happen." Because when I bring all my requests before the Lord and I ask Him to help me or open a door or bring a miracle into my life, I need to keep my hands open and my heart surrendered. I need to remember that above all else, God is good, and His plan is so much better than what we could ever imagine. And it's much easier to accept God's redirection or "no" when our hands are open than when our fists are closed tightly around our dreams.

And the truth is, God truly can't give us anything if our hands are full. If we are chasing our own dreams, filling our schedules and our hearts with things we haven't surrendered to God or sought His wisdom about, not only are we probably going to find ourselves in a world of hurt, we're going to miss out on so many opportunities and blessings that God wants to show us. And I don't know about you, but I definitely don't want to miss out on anything that God has for me.

Because the truth is, God IS good. He's not holding out on us, and He's not mean. He has intentional, perfect plans for our lives, but that doesn't mean life will always go the way we think it will. We will face closed doors, "not yets", and even "no", but there is purpose in all of that. In those hard, frustrating situations, God is teaching us to rely on Him in an even deeper way, but He's also showing us that He has even better things in store. He's reminding us that He is preparing a good, good thing for us - or maybe He's preparing us for that thing.

I'm learning in a new way right now that God often tells us "not right now" because He knows that we still have heart work to do. I know that God won't give me peace about being in a relationship until He makes me ready to be in a relationship. I know that my platform won't grow until He prepares me for that and helps me heal so I'm ready for that influence. I know that I won't make new friends, or my friendships won't grow, until He has allowed that lonely season so that I lean into Him in a new way. Sometimes we don't get what we've prayed for because we aren't ready for what we're praying for, and that's okay. There's honestly such beauty in that, because we get to experience in a new way the protection and kindness of such a loving Father.


I don't know what kind of closed doors or disappointing situations you're facing right now, but I want you to know that God is good, no matter what. He has a beautiful plan for your life, and it may not look the way you thought it would, but I guarantee that once we get to the other side of Heaven, we are going to see that God worked all things together for a perfect purpose. And He's always preparing us, always working in our hearts, so that we can receive and appreciate all that He has in store for us. But we must keep our hands and our hearts open and willing to surrender our plans so that we can embrace God's plan.

How have you experienced this kind of provision in your life, despite the closed doors? What has God taught you through seasons of "not yets" or "no"? Let me know down in the comments below; I love to hear from you! Or, if there's something I can pray alongside you over, drop that in the comments as well. :)



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