A God Who Unlocks Locked Doors

Posted: February 11, 2011 in God Moments

The first year that Todd and I lived in Italy was a spiritually dry time.  In retrospect, it’s difficult for me to know if I made it harder than it needed to be or not.  Certainly, if I did it was because of the despair and unbelief that I carried that God would ever actually speak to us and give us direction for our future.  We spent many of our evenings crying out for the Word of the Lord.  It felt at times like the heavens were brass as we sought the Lord for His purpose for us.

That’s not to say it was all doom and gloom.  It was also during this time that we had many visitors.  Todd’s parents and my younger sister were among them.  I became a pro at showing people around the city, to the Vatican, the Coloseum, the Trevy Fountain, Piazza Navona, and the Pantheon.  Through a connection of my father’s, we were called in May about hosting a missionary YES team for a week as they toured Rome.  The YES team had been stationed for ministry in Albania, but had to flee when the country started rioting.  It was a team of six people and I was a bit unsure of my hospitality skills to host that many people for a week.  With a bit of encouragement, we decided to give it a try.  I needn’t have worried.  The team was wonderful, and so appreciative that it was a joy to host them.

The first evening of their stay, Sonya, one of the team members, went to use the bathroom adjoining our dining area and turned the skeleton key to lock the door behind her.  When she was ready to come out, she turned the key, but found she was unable to unlock the door.  We heard her yelling and came to help.  Try as we might, we could not get the door unlocked.  Sonya finally had to climb through the window onto the balcony.  Todd and another man tried for another hour or so that night to unlock the door, until finally the key broke off in the lock.

The team finished their week with us and we still had gotten no closer to opening the bathroom door, though it was not for lack of trying!  Todd visited a locksmith with the broken key and had him try to make a replica of the original.  Actually he made four keys, hoping that one would be the exact fit.  We spent approximately a half hour with each of those keys, twisting and turning them in the lock.  The door would not open.  I was beginning to think that we would never get it open!

That night, Todd and I again spent the evening seeking the Lord for His plans for us.  Todd prayed in our bedroom and I was walking around out in the living area.  I was feeling so frustrated that I had not yet been able to discern the Lord’s voice regarding my purpose for living in Rome.  “Lord,” I said outloud, “You say to ask and it will be given to you, seek and you shall find and knock and the door will be opened.  But what if our future is locked up tight, just like that stupid bathroom door?”  As I spoke this to the Lord, I walked over and knocked on the locked bathroom door.  With my other hand I turned the handle.  To my amazement, the door opened!  “Todd!” I shouted.  “Come here!”  I told him what had happened and we marveled together that the Lord was speaking to us with a clear sign.

Our future was not locked, at least not too locked for the Lord.  His promise was true for us!  We would ask and we would receive and we would seek and we would find and we would knock and the door would be opened!  We rejoiced and our faith soared that evening as we praised the Lord for His encouragement to us.


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