Summary: A story of someone that wanted to do something for God, but God told him no. Instead of letting his human nature take over and throwing a temper tantrum, or becoming jealous or callous, he did everything he could to enable the person that God had called t
When God Closes the Door, Don’t Build a Wall in Front of It
First, I just want to say it’s good to be back behind this pulpit. I really missed not being able to share with you a month ago, when my turn came around. It would’ve been a little hard to deliver the message from Mexico though. But it is good to be back to share with you what I believe God has laid on my heart to share this morning
My message this morning is one that actually began before I went to Mexico. I was working on it a little before we left, and now I finally get to share it with you. The subject I’m going to be speaking on this morning really comes from something that Dale said back when the King’s Heralds were here to give their program. He said that he is glad to be able to support them and have that investment in his spiritual portfolio. I’ve really thought about that a lot since then, and I kept rolling it around in my mind, and a couple other thoughts stemmed from there. I even took the thought that I think he was giving of enabling others to do great things for the kingdom, and kind of took it a little further. The title of my message this morning is When God closes the door; don’t build a wall in front of it.
Have you ever wanted to do something and been told no? Have you ever wanted to do something for God and been told no? The latter part of this week, my family and I were up in Lancaster, PA. As some of you may know Matthew is a really big Thomas the tank engine fan. And if you’ll remember from our church trip to Lancaster this spring, there’s a Thomas train that runs on the Strasburg railroad. So we were up there to ride the Thomas train for Matthew. Now if you’ve never been to an event like this, there are hundreds of kids from the ages of 1 or 2 to probably about 7 or 8 all over the place wanting to do this and that and buy this and get that. Now imagine what happened when they were told no. Temper tantrum is the first word that comes to my mind. Anything from just whining and crying to falling on the floor kicking and screaming, I heard it all. The worst case I’ve seen wasn’t this weekend, but was a girl my mother used to babysit. She would do it all. The worst that she would do though was she would make her whole body stiff and hold her arms close at her side and just fall backwards. Now many of you are parents and you’ve gone through this stage or you’re going through it and you know what I’m talking about. And we can all relate, and if we’re all honest with ourselves we can say that we act pretty much the same way when God tells us no as his children. Our human nature tends to take over and we throw a childish temper tantrum.
Just a hypothetical for you-Suppose I want to be a missionary to a far off country, and I pray and pray that God would send me to this country to spread the news about Him. But in the following months God sends His answer and doors begin to close that would’ve made it possible for me to go to that far off country. Now suppose a couple in my church gets called to go to that far off country. What is my response to that couple? My human nature’s response would be to get upset, to be jealous, and maybe even in someway hinder their mission to this far off country. But as growing Christians we need to put that sinful human nature away, and rely on the Holy Spirit to guide our thoughts and actions. Instead we need to enable others to do the jobs that God calls them to do.
The dictionary defines Enable-to make possible or easy; to ready or equip. Now in my hypothetical situation that I just gave you, both the couple and I would’ve probably been trying to raise some money. We both would’ve been making plans, and getting things together. How could I enable them to go to that country I wanted to go to? What sort of things could I do to make things easier for them? Really all you have to do is go through that list of the things I would do in my human nature and reverse it. I would be happy for them. I would let them know that I will pray for them. I could take the funds that I had been raising and give it to them. Any books or knowledge about the country that I had learned, I could share with them.