by: Allen Domelle
1 Corinthians 16:9
“For a great door and effectual is opened unto me, and there are many adversaries.”
Many people want the opportunity to see God work in their life and ministry, but few are ready to face the resistance that comes with it. Paul said that a “great door” opened. This door allowed him to be more effective in his ministry, but the open door wasn’t going to be experienced without resistance. He also said that because there was an open door, “…there are many adversaries.” He completely understood that opportunity equals resistance. There are several observations that you can take from this verse that will help you as you walk through your open doors.
First, an open door doesn’t always mean it will benefit you. Sometimes an open door will benefit others or the cause of Christ, but it may mean hardship for you. I have experienced many open doors, but many of those open doors didn’t benefit me at all. Too many Christians assume benefits as an open door when that is not always the case. You are setting yourself up for discouragement if you think that every open door is going to benefit you. Stephen had an open door to preach on the street to many people, but it didn’t benefit him. In fact, his open door caused him to lose his life. Don’t always conclude that an open door will be beneficial.
Second, an open door doesn’t mean that you don’t have to expend effort to see its effectiveness. Paul certainly had an open door, but for that open door to become effective, he had to walk through it and do the work to keep it open. Every time I have had an open door, it meant that there would be more work I had to do. Please don’t think that an open door means that you can enjoy its benefits without the work. If you want to enjoy the benefits of an open door, you are going to have to walk through it and do the work that it requires. If you have an open door to reach more people, you are going to have to go soul winning to see the results of that open door. An open door without effort equals wasted opportunity. It is always going to take effort to see the results of an open door.
Third, an open door will always bring resistance. Paul totally understood that his open door meant that another’s door was closing. That meant that he would encounter resistance to see the effectiveness of his open door. Friend, those who are losing effectiveness because of your open door are not going to sit idly by. They are going to fight you to keep their effectiveness. Everybody is not going to be happy with you when you have open doors. If you don’t have the stomach for battles, maybe you shouldn’t walk through your open door. Every time the LORD has opened a door for me, I have always encountered resistance from those who don’t want me to have more effectiveness. Opportunity always equals resistance. Stop complaining about the resistance and realize it is part of having an open door.
What are you going to do with your open door? Yes, the LORD will be with you as you walk through it, but it won’t be easy. If you will realize that your opportunity means resistance is going to come, when that resistance happens it can be your motivation to continue in the effectiveness the open door brings. I challenge you to meet your resistance with determination to continue until you realize the result of effectiveness that your open door will bring.