Look, I am about to do something new; even now it is coming. Do you not see it? Indeed, I will make a way in the wilderness, rivers in the desert. — Isaiah 43:19
In the classic Broadway musical and film The Sound of Music, the Reverend Mother sends Maria away from the convent to work as a nanny for the Von Trapp family. Maria is unsettled at the idea of leaving the abbey and giving up on her dream of becoming a nun. The Reverend Mother reassures her with the now-famous cliché, “When the Lord closes a door, somewhere He opens a window.” In other words, whenever one opportunity ends, another opportunity will come along — and it will probably be a better one. Sure enough, the closing abbey door leads to the opening of the window that ushers Fräulein Maria into the arms of the dashing Captain Von Trapp.
Though the cliché is meant to help people stay positive in the face of disappointment, it isn’t exactly true. God doesn’t promise that when something doesn’t work out, something better is waiting for us just around the corner. His pledge is far more substantive than that. He promises to sustain us amid life’s disappointments. When all the doors and windows remain shut, He helps us make our way through the dark room, and He sustains us. Our circumstances do not always change for the better. But we can be confident that He will use them to change us for the better.
‘I know the plans I have for you’ — this is the Lord’s declaration — ‘plans for your welfare, not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope’. — Jeremiah 29:11
When was the last time you faced a closed door? During this time, how did God make a way in the wilderness and rivers in the desert? Why can you trust Him with closed doors, even when there are no windows in sight?
Thank God that He makes a way through the wilderness.
Grateful That God Is for Me
The Lord is for me; I will not be afraid. What can man do to me? — Psalm 118:6
When our family plays board games, everyone is out to win. It’s a no-holds-barred, every-man-for-himself, dog-eat-dog rivalry. Through our sons’ teen years, we often played Settlers of Catan. The battles were epic. Still, they were all in good fun. Mostly. But things took a turn for the worse when we expanded the game with cards that could be used as a method of attacking other players. This (and the ambiguous rules) started to create problems. Competitions turned into arguments and hard feelings. Some players felt that others really were “against them.” Things got so bad that we had to call it quits and find some board games that were less combative.
It’s one thing to have an opponent in a game — but having a real- life opponent is an entirely different matter. Especially when that opponent is out to do you harm. Some people think God is out to do them harm. Perhaps they’ve lost a job or encountered a series of unfortunate events. They look at the hand they’ve been dealt and conclude that God is not on their side. But according to the Bible, this is not true. The Lord is for you and not against you. He may not always answer your prayers in the way you expect. Nevertheless, He delights in your well-being (Psalm 35:27) and rejoices in doing you good (Jeremiah 32:41). Whenever life gets rough or people try to do you harm, don’t despair or be afraid. Remember that God is always on your side.
How do you feel knowing that God is for you and not against you? Why do people sometimes struggle to believe that God is for them? What difference does it make to have God on your side when people come against you?
Thank God that He is for you.
Excerpted with permission from Growing Grateful by Mary A. Kassian, copyright Mary A. Kassian.
* * *
There is so much uncertainty these days. But, what is not uncertain is that God is for you. He is with you. He has good plans for your life. He will make a way. Believe it and thank Him for His goodness today! Come share with us on our blog. We want to hear from you! ~ Devotionals Daily