Just because we have a plan doesn’t mean that God has to follow it.
…for there is a wide-open door for a great work here, and many people are responding. But there are many who oppose me.
1 Corinthians 16:9
Share this Devotional
Paul is bringing his first letter to the Corinthians to a close. As he does he shares with them his desire and plans to come visit them. His plan is to stay for a while and it is believed that he did stay about three months. But Paul also inserts a statement in our verse for today that is interesting. Paul is in Ephesus when he writes to the Corinthians. He has been there for some time.
Paul is saying that in Ephesus there is an open door for the gospel of Jesus Christ to be shared. Not only is there a door but many people are responding to this message and being saved. Paul is being sensitive to the moving of the Holy Spirit. He is making plans, but he is also allowing God to set the path and the timing of his life.
We need to take a lesson from Paul in this. Just because we have a plan doesn’t mean that God has to follow it. Paul had his eyes open for where God was at work and he was determined to go where God was working; even if that meant throwing his plans out the window. How many of us would be willing to throw our plans out the window so that we could be where God was working? You need to know that the opportunity to do that happens more often than you are probably aware. We need to start looking for them with much greater diligence.
Paul also states in today’s verse that there are many that oppose him. In fact, shortly after writing this letter to the Corinthians there was a riot in Ephesus because of the Christians. It was at that time that Paul perceived that the door was closing, and he left and eventually made his way to Corinth. We also need to be looking for the closing of doors. In churches all over America, maybe even yours, God has closed doors that people are still trying to go through. The way that we know the door is open is because people are responding. If no one is responding to the things that are being done, then the door is closed to that and God is at work in something else.
What has God closed the door to in your life, ministry, or church? Are there areas where no one is responding but you are still doing it because ‘that’s what we’ve always done’? It might take more courage to turn from a closed door than it does to go through an open door. God wants us to be watching for where He is working and then coming alongside Him. If God has closed a door to something, you are wasting God’s resources that He placed in you if you continue to try to keep the door open. It doesn’t matter how much you enjoy doing that thing. It doesn’t even matter if you are really good at it. If God has closed the door and is working somewhere else, you need to turn from the closed door and go to where God is working. The sooner you do that the better. Jesus, teach us to watch for Your movements that we might always be right where You are.
Daily Bible Reading Plan:
Click the button below to have these devotionals sent directly to your inbox as they are published.