What I remember most about that haunted house was the room of doors. Yes, when we finally discovered the secret brick that opened the fireplace, allowing us entrance to the remainder of the house, we found ourselves in a dark, round room with a multitude of doors covering the circular walls. Most of the doors opened only partway before slamming into some sort of obstacle. Two of the doors led to emergency exits. And the final door, which we later discovered was the correct passageway, held a surprise for those daring to enter. The door swung wide and, just as we all stepped forward, a huge figure leaped forward and screamed. In response, we all leaped backward and screamed, then resumed trying other doors. Even after we had exhausted all other routes and possibilities, none of us wanted to open that particular door again. Yes, beyond the scary leaper there may have been a passageway, but dare we try again? We did, and sure enough, beyond the jumps and growls of the figure lay the way out of the room of doors.
Does life ever have you feeling like you're in a room of doors? Exhausted and frustrated, you seek a way out only to find that most (if not all) of the doors are barred by some form of obstacle. No way out. Surrounded by darkness, you know that surely one of the doors has to lead to a better place, but no matter which way you turn, you're stuck facing another obstacle. Health. Finances. Relationships. Work. Shattered dreams. Unmet expectations. All you want is an open door. Your heart's desire is to serve God to the best of your ability, and you can't, for the life of you, figure out why He's making it so complicated.
Then you notice the one door that is different from all the rest. While the others only open partway before reaching a dead end, this door opens fully but holds an obstacle of its own. A surprise just for you. It's obvious that this passageway is the way out. There's no mistaking that it is, indeed, different than all the rest, and you feel strangely pulled in its direction. Yet, you've tried that door before. You are all too aware of the leaping figure ready to pounce on you as soon as you take that first step. Yet beyond the door, you hear a soft voice calling, "Come, child. I will protect you." Dare you take the chance?
As you determine, whether out of faith or desperation, to enter the passageway, you take that first step, and sure enough, the roaring lion pounces. He doesn't want you to enter. He wants to keep you in the darkness. He thrives on your confusion and frustration. And he will do whatever it takes to keep you from traveling the road to which the Lord has called you. He knows how weary you have become. He understands that you're ready to quit. And so he pounces, causing you to leap back and scream in fright. He does not want you to reach what's waiting beyond the door--God's perfect will.
And so, there is a decision to make. Do you keep trying other doors? Do you wander around aimlessly hoping that things will change and one of the doors will miraculously become unobstructed? Do you sit in the darkness, determined to just give in? Or do you plow through the door you know to be the right one? Yes, it's scary. Yes, if you choose that door, you're inviting the attacks of Satan. Yes, he's going to fight you all the way.
But don't forget who opened the door to begin with. God will walk with you. He will lead, guide and protect you. He is the One holding Satan's leash, which means the devil can't do anything to you without God's permission. Sure, he'll attack, but you don't have to fight the battle alone. God is on your side. He wants to fight for you. He wants to be your strength. He wants to guide you to a place of peace and contentment. Won't you follow?
Walk through that door and discover the next level!
Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour: Whom resist stedfast in the faith, knowing that the same afflictions are accomplished in your brethren that are in the world. But the God of all grace, who hath called us unto his eternal glory by Christ Jesus, after that ye have suffered a while, make you perfect, stablish, strengthen, settle you.- I Peter 5:8-10