When You Wonder Why Doors Won’t Open

Do you ever wonder why doors won’t open in your life? A recent experience gave me some insight into closed doors and helped me look for opportunities while I wait for God to turn the lock and grease the hinges.


We don’t have our back yard fenced in yet, so taking Sheldon out to do his business is a bit of a production. I whistle for him to come downstairs and as he barrels through the living room I open the door to the screened in porch. After flipping on the lights, we pause at the threshold long enough to strap the leash around his neck. I push the door open so we can turn the corner and head down the stairs out into the yard. 

After his business is done, which thankfully is fairly quick unless a bunny or a squirrel teases him, we go back up the stairs. He usually walks ahead of me which often leads to a predicament. When he stands with his front paws on the small landing outside the door to go back on to the porch, there isn’t enough room for me to pull it open. At least not without smacking him in the face. 

Asking, Seeking, Knocking…

That’s when it hit me. How often have I stood at the threshold of something in life, asking, seeking, knocking, wondering why doors won’t open? Maybe you’ve been there, too. Wondering why you didn’t get that job or promotion you worked so hard to earn? Or why Mr. Right didn’t ask you to marry him? Maybe you’ve wondered why you didn’t get the adorable house in the perfect neighborhood with the right schools? Or why your child didn’t make the team or the grade?  

“Ask, and it will be given to you;

seek, and you will find;

knock, and it will be opened to you.”

Matthew 7:7

I know God is all powerful. So I believe He absolutely can do anything, open any door. But He is also all knowing. He knows everything from before creation through all eternity. Because of His perfect knowledge, sometimes He chooses not to open doors. For me, for you, for any of us. I won’t claim to know all His reasons, but I’ve researched a few that bring me great comfort while simultaneously challenging me to stop looking at closed doors as problems and start seeing their opportunities.

10 Opportunities Found Behind Closed Doors


For me, new doors often mean bigger responsibilities with bigger risks. Ones I may not be ready for just yet. Closed doors give me opportunities to hone my skills. Time for those tasks to become second nature when God does open doors. 

Instead of seeing problems when doors won't open, look for opportunities.
10 Opportunities Found
Behind Closed Doors


My mom always said patience is a virtue. Unfortunately, it isn’t one that comes easily. It has to be taught. In this microwave era of instantaneous gratification, we rarely have a reason to practice patience. But it is so important for us as we patiently await the fulfillment of our hope in Jesus’ triumphant return. Closed doors offer opportunities to practice patience and develop perseverance.


I could absolutely yank that door open and smack Sheldon in the face doing it, but that wouldn’t be the most loving choice. I know he wants through that door, but forcing it open would endanger him. Sometimes God keeps doors closed because He knows the dangers that may await us on the other side. Closed doors are an opportunity for God to protect us from hidden dangers.


Sometimes I want to go through a door for all the wrong reasons. The book of James reminds readers the reason they aren’t getting what they ask for is because they ask for their own pleasure. And I can assure you God’s primary purpose is not my pleasure in this life. His will is that all would be saved and then by the power of the Holy Spirit His children would be made over in the image of His Son. If we want to see God fling doors open wide, we need to allow the Holy Spirit to align our purposes with His will. Closed doors are an opportunity to mine my motives and pinpoint my purpose. 


Whew, this is a hard pill to swallow, but stick with me. There may be sin standing between me and the door I’m praying to walk through. Before Joshua took the Israelites across the Jordan River into the Promised Land, he told them to sanctify themselves, because God was going to work great wonders before their eyes. We know we don’t sanctify ourselves but are cleansed by the blood of Christ through repentance. Without sin clouding our vision, we see God’s work more clearly. Closed doors offer opportunities to repent in preparation for watching God work.


I need to move Sheldon out of the way before opening the door. Often God needs to get us in a better position before He opens doors. He knows what will happen 6 days, 6 weeks, 6 months, even 6 years down the road. He knows if we’ll be in a better position to prosper by waiting to open those doors. Closed doors offer an opportunity for God to introduce us to the right people, teach us necessary skills, or move us to a better position.


Sheldon has figured out how to open a few doors in our home, but not this one. At least not from this side. There are some doors I could force open in my own strength. I could struggle and strive and figure a lot out on my own. But I’d be cheating myself. I’ve learned through the years, it is way more exciting and a whole lot less exhausting to wait and see God work in His mighty power. Closed doors give us opportunities to recognize God’s power at work. 


When we get nothing but open doors and green lights in life, it can be easy to forget Jesus promised us we’d have trouble. And not just that. He also promised us He had overcome the source of all our troubles and that He would be right there with us to comfort and guide us no matter what we faced in this life. God promises His presence in my problems. Closed doors provide opportunities for me to remember God’s promises.


I don’t know about you, but often once God opens a door, I find myself feeling too busy to pray. It may just be God keeps some doors closed so we continue to spend time in deeply intimate prayer seeking His presence, so we don’t get sidetracked from what’s most precious. Closed doors offer opportunities to grow a more vibrant prayer life. 


If I’m really honest, my pride is probably my biggest obstacle. It really doesn’t feel good to admit that “out loud,” but I’m guessing I’m not alone in it. God knows how prone I am to taking credit for His work, for allowing it to define my worth. And He wants more for me than a life of prideful achievements. He deserves better from me. Closed doors offer me an opportunity to check my pride.

Instead of seeing problems when doors won't open, look for opportunities! #askseekknock #doorswontopen #closeddoors Click To Tweet

What Doors Won’t Open For You?

When doors won't open, remember God already opened the only door that really matters.
When doors won’t open, remember God already opened the only door that really matters.

Now, every time I take Sheldon out I have this reminder to search my heart and look for where I might be standing in God’s way. Instead of wondering why doors won’t open, see closed doors as opportunities!

We all want a lot out of this life. Society trains us to expect it, to fight for it. Some people even claim if we were “right with God” He would open every door we knocked on. Or if we had enough faith or prayed hard enough. But even God closed the door on His son by rolling a stone across the tomb. And what happened behind that closed door forever locked away the power of Satan’s sin accusations against us. Then, when the time was just right, He opened the door to eternal life by rolling away the stone. 

The truth is Jesus’ death and resurrection forever opened the gates of heaven for all who receive His gift of faith. Trusting this truth keeps me from spending too much time wondering why other doors won’t open. He has already opened the only door that really matters. 

God already opened the only door that really matters! #closeddoors #askseekknock Click To Tweet

What doors are you banging on today? Which opportunities might God be leading you to discover behind closed doors?

When you wonder why Doors won't Open

Linking Up With

For more encouragement please join the discussions on these fabulous blog link ups – Suzanne EllerFaith On FireSusan B. MeadFaith Filled FridayGrace and TruthFaith and Fellowship FridaySoul SurvivalRah Rah Link UpTell His StorySitting Among FriendsTestimony TuesdayPlanting Roots, and Fresh Market FridaySalt and Light, and Becoming Press’s Writer Wednesday, Moments of Hope

5 thoughts on “When You Wonder Why Doors Won’t Open

  1. Patience is a virtue, but also a fruit of the Holy Spirit. we have to listen for Him to guide us. Indeed, He opens doors no one can shut but He wants us to be ready, often as we grow in faith there are more spiritual attacks, since you were in the military, it is the same mentality, watching for enemy devices. And He is so good to protect us. Thanks, Liz.

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