The store was small and quaint, but it still caught my eye as I walked down the street. There was no one in sight as I peered through the large glass window and was instantly intrigued, it was a book store. It looked like it was full of old books and as a writer and avid reader (and shopper) stumbling upon a new bookstore was like finding a tiny piece of heaven on earth. I hopped up the four crumbly cement stairs towards the chipping wooden red door and pulled the handle fully expecting it to open immediately. But it resisted, so I pulled a second and third time with the same results. I let go and walked back down the stairs to ensure the sign truly read ‘open’ which it did. Determined, I bounded back up the stairs two at a time and tugged at the door, I jiggled and turned the handle but it just would not budge. Maybe it’s closed, I thought to myself and just before I decided to retreat and make my back onto the sidewalk, defeated and bookless the door swung open. ‘Sorry, I was in the back, sometimes that door sticks and the odd thing is, it will only open if you don’t try to force it.’ The merchant smiled as she held the door open for me. I made polite conversation as I slid passed her to make my way to the nearest bookshelf. I had been right in thinking that the bookstore was a gem, I purchased some great older books no longer in print and happily left the store, this time opening the door gently and easily.
As I made my way home, I thought about how that door was kind of like some instances in my life. Sometimes I want in so badly and or to get to the next level or stage in life so quickly that I’m doing everything in my power to force things to happen except be patient and wait on God to open doors that I can not. I tug, throw tantrums, scream, kick, or bang on doors & many times they still don’t open in my timing, it just leaves me breathless and frustrated. And often times when they do open, I honestly am not too thrilled about the outcome.
I’m no expert, but I challenge you the next time you are upset about where you are in life to just chill out, find somethings to be grateful for in the moment and stop pushing against right now. This isn’t to say stop dreaming, striving or grinding towards goals but it is to say to dispose of anxiousness and impatience that isn’t truly serving you. Maybe you will notice as I have, that when we wait on God, when we are patient and when the timing is right, doors will open.
I long to hear from the Lord and to have a much deeper connection with my heavenly father. I know people that say they can hear God speaking to them about certain situations in their lives and I want that for my life as well. Recently, I was very upset and saddened by falling apart of a two year relaionship, to say the least I was heartbroken. I desperately needed to hear from God and to know his will for my life. I began a fast as I knew that somethings will only come about through prayer and fasting. (Matthew 17:21) Although, I did not hear an audible voice during this time of fasting and prayer I felt closer to God as I shut out the rest of the world and focused on Him. At the end, I didn’t want to stop! I would recommend fasting as a means of removing yourself from the world, shifting your focus onto Him and relying on God to fulfill your desires. I am still on my journey to hear from God and to recognize His voice beyond a shadow of a doubt because I know he speaks to me, I’m just not sure that I am listenting. In the bible there are many pepole that fasted, but during my time of fasting I thought a lot of Ester. She fasted for three days before a huge, life altering decision that if gone wrong could have ended her life. In no way was I fasting for an answer to a life or death situation, but I was still seeking answers. One thing the fast showed me was the fact that I had to trust in God and rely on Him, in times of hunger and wanting to give up I leaned on and trusted in Him to feed me through his daily bread, His word. (Deut 8:3; Matt4:4; Luke 4:4) During my time of fasting I also began to thank God for my heartbreak ironically! Because if it hadn’t happened I never would have relyed so heavily on His word, during this small trial. James says to count it all joy when we go through trials and temptations for through faith in God those difficult times mold and deveop us into more patient and whole people. (James 1:2-4) One more awesome thing occured during my time of fasting, I had a dream where I was told to go to christian.org. Prior to the dream I had never heard of the website and now this is where I begin my journey into blogging and online journal that I hope through God’s saving grace will be of help others!
Scriptures that helped me during my fast:
Psalms 51:10 – Create in me a clean heart O God and renew a right spirit within me.
Provers 3:5 – Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding
Fly – Jason Upton
Have Mercy – Out of Eden
Break Every Chain – Tasha Cobbs (but there are multipl versions)