Responding to open doors of ministry
“To the angel of the church in Philadelphia write:
These are the words of him who is holy and true, who holds the key of David. What he opens no one can shut, and what he shuts no one can open” (New International Version 1984, Revelation 3:7).
2014, 2015 and 2016 were years of shoring up the financial foundation of OJPM. Great attention was given to reduce expenses wherever possible and to look for increased donations.
This was not a time of exclusive inward attention because the Lord opened up our ministry in Cleveland County in December of 2014. However, in making sure that our faith and stewardship complemented each other instead of conflicted with one another, most of our effort was to improve the effectiveness and financial support of the ministry that existed.
God as Creator designed seasons into our lives and our world. Our bodies need daily rest. Relationships seem to ebb and flow over years of time. The earth has winter, spring, summer and fall. It seems with our improved financial condition OJPM is now ready to enter a season of ministry expansion. God is opening new doors.
Every believer I know sees God’s hand at work as doors open and close. Two key steps are needed before you walk through an open door.
The first step is to pray. When I pray to the Lord I look for honor to be given to God, for clarity in direction and for His blessing for action.
Jesus said, “Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives; he who seeks finds; and to him who knocks, the door will be opened” (Matthew 7:7-8).
The sovereignty of God is a mysterious thing. God alone is Infinite, powerful and holy, yet He allows us to not only participate in His will, but also somehow to bend His will through prayer. Actually, I believe our involvement in prayer is just another level of surrender to His will.
Paul had this in mind when he challenged his supporters to “devote [themselves] to prayer, being watchful and thankful. And pray for us, too, that God may open a door for our message, so that we may proclaim the mystery of Christ, for which I am in chains” (Colossians 4:2-3).
The second step is to obey. When I obey the Lord I anticipate fellowship with God, advancement of His Kingdom and unfortunately, resistance from Satan.
When the Lord revealed Himself to John in Revelation, His challenge of opening the door was to believers. It is a universal truth that can apply to unbelievers as well and this is how the verse is usually used in witnessing, but the focus of His statement was to you and me. “Here I am! I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in and eat with him, and he with me” (Revelation 3:20).
Please join with me in prayer and obedience as we respond to open doors of ministry in 2017.
Unleashing the captives,