[..] what HE opens no one can shut, and what HE shuts no one can open. – Isaiah 22:22

There is no problem acknowledging that God is capable of opening doors and giving us opportunities that are otherwise unaffordable with our own resources, ability or knowledge. However, God does not just hold the power to open doors; but also to close them– and I fear that accepting the latter, is often a challenge.

First Understand God’s Sovereignty

If we are to understand God’s power of opening and closing doors, then it’s fair to first remind ourselves of His sovereignty. This will help give us a glimpse of His capabilities and the authority He has to do anything He pleases. When we believe and claim that God is sovereign we are saying that nothing in the universe happens outside of God’s influence and authority. We are saying that God has no limitations to what He can and cannot do;

God has no limitations to what He can and cannot do
there is simply nothing impossible for Him. In fact, we can look at some quick scriptural references that will further reassure us of this truth. In Psalm 103:19 we read, “The LORD has established his throne in heaven, and his kingdom rules over all.” From this we can be reassured that He rules over all things. In Jeremiah 32:17 we read, “Ah, Sovereign LORD, you have made the heavens and the earth by your great power and outstretched arm. Nothing is too hard for you.” From this we gather that He can accomplish all things, and any thing which He desires. In Romans 11:33 we read, “Oh, the depth of the riches of the wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable his judgments, and his paths beyond tracing out!” Here we are reminded that His knowledge and wisdom is infinite. While reading Colossians 1:16, “For in him all things were created: things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities; all things have been created through him and for him” and Revelation 21:6, “He said to me: “It is done. I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End [..]” we conclude that He also holds all things (visible and invisible) together, as well as He is above and before all things. The beginning and end to everything.

Opposition? Or God Closing Doors?

It depends. Although it can be a bit more challenging to accept this, God sometimes does close doors of opportunity for various reasons that are beyond our ability to see or understand in that particular moment. Sometimes when an opportunity you were anxiously waiting for doesn’t open up, or when certain things in your life start falling apart it becomes easy to question God’s goodness, or foreknowledge.  However, it is for reasons as such that it’s absolutely necessary we exercise discernment in our spiritual walk.  Every time something does not go our way we can’t afford to live by the assumption that “it was probably the devil”.  

Spiritual discernment is such a vital part to our relationship with God
No, it’s actually not always the devil. Spiritual discernment is such a vital part to our relationship with God as it gives us clarity in knowing if a door has been closed by God, or if we are facing adversity that we need to fight against. By having this knowledge it allows us to shift our focus to the right direction, and know if we should respond to God in thanksgiving, or respond to attacks and challenges by fighting in prayer. In 1 Corinthians 16:9 we read:
For a great and effective door has opened to me, and there are many adversaries
When we are facing resistance from the enemy, we need to know in certainty that it’s from him so that we can continue to persist in prayer and battle against whatever may have risen against us.  However, our lack of discernment often prevents us from knowing the difference between God closing a door versus adversity.
our lack of discernment often prevents us from knowing the difference between God closing a door versus adversity
As a result, we get caught up in fighting against the wrong side, and further delay the fulfillment of His will over our lives.

For example, if we look at the lives of the early apostles we will notice that they faced imprisonment, injustice, and eventually death for simply proclaiming the Gospel of Jesus.  Even though circumstances became challenging and the opposition against them rose, they continued to persist in prayer until the very end and held on to their convictions that it was God’s will for them to continue preaching the Good News. That decision they made to continue and push through their challenges came from a sense of certainty they had that it wasn’t God closing a door; rather the enemy attempting to stop them. And because of that discernment (which led them to continue fighting for the Gospel) today we can be inspired by the lives they lived and by the Spirit of God that worked through them to teach and disciple many.

However, sometimes God does in fact close doors. There may be things (which we may believe are good for us) that He may simply close the door to. Things such as great career opportunities, or relationships, or education, and/or ministry opportunities that God will simply shut the door to.  Since God is the only one who is sovereign (as we initially discussed) it will be very difficult to understand why, especially when we can’t see the harm in it.  For instance, reading Acts chapter 16 we notice that Paul and Silas were set out on their mission, but for reasons unknown they were forbidden by the Holy Spirit to proceed to Asia. Were their intentions for wanting to go to Asia wrong or bad? Absolutely not. But they were still forbidden. Yet, by simply submitting to the plans of God, the door to Macedonia was open instead where they met a woman by the name of Lydia.  She was able to receive the Gospel and in return her and her family were saved.  There will be times that God will close a particular door in your life and regardless of what the reason may be, you must trust and know that it will NEVER be to withhold back something that’s actually good. Why am I so certain? Because His word in Romans 8:28 reassures us that

in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose
When He shuts the door, don’t struggle to open it again. Rather, with an attitude of thanksgiving come before Him and submit to the plans He has which will always exceed the plans you have.

Walk Boldly Through The Doors He Opens

YES! I can’t scream this loud enough! Walk through the doors He opens BOLDLY! Sometimes it takes just as much as courage to walk through open doors as it does to accept closed ones but you must DO IT. We spend so much praying consistently for God to open certain doors in our lives, and for Him to bless us with an opportunity to do His will, but when He finally does we freeze up and start stepping back. We need to be open and spiritually prepared to the different means and methods by which God desires to open doors for us. For example, when the angel told Mary that she would be with child, Mary accepted the will of God over her life. However, Joseph was ready to close the door on that marriage, until he was also visited by the angel who confirmed that this was indeed the will of God.  By receiving this vision, he realized that it was God who had opened this door and no other.

Be prepared to see God open doors in your life that you never expected.  And at times, the doors He opens for you will be so great that others around you may feel you are undeserving, or unworthy of, but you have to walk through them boldly because “what He opens, no one can shut.”  He won’t just open the doors you’ve asked for, but He will blow you away with what He has prepared for you.

As you continue to seek Him, and follow His lead, be very sensitive to the doors He’s opening for you
As you continue to seek Him, and follow His lead, be very sensitive to the doors He’s opening for you because those doors are moments of great opportunity for legacy to be born, and opportunity for the world to witness a lifetime of influence and impact.  The key is remembering to exercise discernment, and being sensitive to His voice.

Written by Christina Girma

    3 Comments

  1. Elbethel November 23, 2015 at 12:13 pm Reply

    1st Acknowledge His Sovereignty 2nd Exercise discernment and sensitive to His voice.
    Bless be His Holy name. I bet Holy Spirit delights in you Christina. Using and seeing His Wisdom, Understanding and Knowledge poured put through you.
    Bless you heart!

    • Christina G November 25, 2015 at 11:00 am Reply

      Thank you so much! Be blessed.

  2. phanfere January 23, 2016 at 6:36 pm Reply

    Outstanding!

    “Sometimes it takes just as much as courage to walk through open doors as it does to accept closed ones ” – This couldn’t be any truer.

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