The Closed Door


A member of the 2014 Winter Olympic Team really made me think. Were there things in my life that I thought I ‘couldn’t live without?’ Because chances are, I’d be fine. I might even learn to thrive without them.

Nick Goepper, a men’s Slope Style skier had an unfortunate accident. Skiing in New Zealand last year, he broke his hand. He couldn’t hold on to the ski poles due to the pain of the break, so he decided to keep skiing without them.

He qualified for the Winter Olympics, skiing and jumping without the poles. And he won a Bronze Medal doing the same thing. It was unheard of to participate in Slope Style without the balancing help of ski poles.

Nick took a huge negative and made it work for him. He thought he had to have those poles to succeed. But he was able to turn that negative into a huge positive. (I wonder how many other skiers will try it?)


This Olympian was a perfect example of experiencing a door that closed. He couldn’t rely on a piece of equipment he’d been using for years. I think I might have given up. How can I go on without the tools I need?

But God provided a window. He gave Nick the strength he needed to persevere. Even though it looked hopeless, he continued to practice and eventually excel with his handicap. He refused to see that closed door as the final answer.

What liability has God given you that gave birth to a new asset?

Have you ever faced a slammed door? I’m sure you have. Maybe you’re staring at one right now. It’s not a fun place to be.

I can guarantee Nick didn’t come to his decision immediately or lightly. I’m sure he had his dark days. The “Why me?” and “What now?” days. All of us who wake up to find a brick wall instead of a door have those days too.

Every day moves in rhythm with the Spirit. Each moment breathes with the sure hope that there is a window. Yes, God will provide that next step, along with his help and a new direction.

To identify the new way, I must sit quietly in prayer. I have to listen to my heart and the words of encouragement and instruction that the Lord sends. No matter what is facing me today, God will show me the way to shine in it. I was created to overcome with him, not sink into despair.

The new perspective will come if I persevere, just like Nick did. Climbing through that window, I’ll succeed in ways I never thought possible. And like the Lord planned all along, I’ll gain the wisdom that tells me God had to brick up that door. If he didn’t, I’d never leave it.

There’s so much more planned for you and me. Let’s not let one locked door stand in the way. Come on…let’s find that window!

Surrounded by the Spirit on Facebook

Linking today with Roxie at Living From Glory to Glory


58 thoughts on “The Closed Door

  1. What a thoughtfully written post, Ceil. “Every day moves in rhythm with the Spirit. Each moment breathes with the sure hope that there is a window”. I love those words because I’m currently facing what appears to be a closed door. Once again your words speak encouragement to me…” I must sit quietly in prayer. I have to listen to my heart and the words of encouragement and instruction that the Lord sends”. He seems to be speaking, “Be still and know that I AM GOD.” to me from several different mediums. I’m beginning to see a picture in my mind and heart. I love the image you’ve enclosed. When I am still and remember WHO it is that is in control it is as if I can visualize that window rising ever so slowly to give me some fresh air! Ceil, thank you for your obedience in sharing the way the Lord used this skier to encourage you. In doing so, you have encouraged my heart GREATLY! xo

    • Hi Dianna! I’m so glad this post encouraged you! I was visualizing your window opening, and the breeze coming through…I like that a lot. Bringing in movement and life, a lovely visual.

      I am facing plenty of locked doors myself, so that’s why I wrote about it. This young man took an enormous negative and turned it into victory. What a great story! I pray we will both experience the same thing.

      Have a peaceful evening,

  2. Amen, let’s!! It is amazing how God rearranges things for us in our lives and sends us to where He needs us. Sometimes it’s hard to discern. I feel like I was staring at a locked door for so long in the church denomination I’m leaving that I started to think it was the only thing there. Then, with the powerful ways God has been moving in my life, it finally occurred to me to look around and I found that God was leading me to another church denomination and an open window with a sea of possibilities on the other side. I just had to become willing to stop staring at the lock.

    • Hi Anne! You did have a locked door, didn’t you? And it was such a painful one too, I’m so sorry you had to face that.

      But God sure gave you a wonderful window to gaze out of, didn’t he? And then you climbed right through! I pray that this church will a place for you to thrive, you have so much to give. And talent? You are full of that too!

      So happy for you, happy that you looked past the lock. You are an inspiration to me 🙂

  3. You have a wonderful way of turning your articles into a visions of hope.

    We often get discouraged when things go wrong in our lives and we see the negatives in a situation rather than positively go ahead. With God’s help, and our trust in Him, all things are possible.

    Thanx Ceil.

    God bless.

    • Hi Victor! Thank you for your kind comments. I can get rather discouraged myself, so I recognize the reality of closed doors and the need to look for a new way. You are so right that I won’t find anything without God’s help, my trust…and of course, his impeccable timing.

      Blessings to you my friend,

    • Hi Denise! Thank you for your affirming comment. You are such a faithful blog-friend.

      Thank you for your visit. I hope you are feeling better?

  4. Interesting post…I should have written this one since the name of my blog is “Closed Doors, Open Windows”. Yes, I have experienced many closed doors in my lifetime, and looking back I can see how over and over again God always opened a window of opportunity for growth, change, and new life. I think that is how many new ideas/inventions are created…a closed door became the means of a new idea and a better way! Loved your post today. Thank you for this reminder!

    • Hi Pam! Well I never thought of that, but you’re right! It would be a good subject for you blog, wouldn’t it?

      You’re right about the new ideas too. If we were all happy with a stone wheel, we wouldn’t have car tires. Closed doors are opportunity for growth, I love that. Thank you!

      I’m so glad you liked the post today 🙂
      Have a peaceful night,

  5. Wonderful encouragement in this post, Ceil. I didn’t know that story about the skier. Such courage and resourcefulness–just like God will provide when we need it!

    • Hi Pam! My husband and I were pretty glued to the TV during the Olympics. We love watching the races, and the human interest stories especially. I learned about this skier that way.

      So you can learn a thing or two watching television 🙂
      Thank you for your kind comments my friend.

  6. Sadly, we often spend so much time and energy looking back with longing and regret at the closed doors that we fail to see new doors opening right and left ahead of us …

    Oh what God has in store for those who love Him.

    As always, I am loving your writing my friend. And I have a surprise for you on the Creekside blog tomorrow …


    • Hi Linda! Oh yes, I am guilty of that sometimes. The Lord has the new opportunity waiting, and I’m too busy mourning the past. What a situation! I am so blessed by his patience, believe me.

      Thank you for your kind comment…and I can’t imagine what you have up your sleeve on your blog tomorrow. Guess I’ll just have to visit 🙂
      Blessings to you!

  7. Hey there! It’s been far too long to not stop in for a visit! I have been so sick, but I am on the mend now…. Yay! I refuse to be behind a door that has been bricked, bolted or nailed shut. Unless, that is God put me there. On the other hand, I like the breeze of the holy spirit from the window…… Wherever he places me, I’ll do it with faith knowing it is where I am suppose to be.

    During my horrible trial of complications from the root canal, God kept telling me to “Speak Life” , so in return I am telling you the same. He’s our life line and he wants only whats best for us. Too never give up hope and to fully trust in His Will!

    I hope you have a wonderful time with your friend this weekend. Praying for protection and safety for you while you are away!


    • Hi Amy! How great to hear from you! Does this mean that you are out of the woods now? Ugh. Mouth/tooth pain is just the WORST.

      Thank you for sharing God’s message to you. What a timely word it is too. I could use the reminder that I should trust in him. It means so much that you would remind me.

      Thank you for your prayers! I hope to be a help to my friend, and I’m looking forward to spending some quiet time with her.
      I am so happy to see you here 🙂
      Have a peaceful rest…and pain-free too!

  8. Wonderful post and one I think we all need to hear from time to time. When I’m facing that closed door, I sometimes forget to look around for the window. However, when I look back in my life, I can see that God has always put it there!

    • Hi Mari! I can usually see in hindsight too. I read recently that when it comes to the will of the Lord, we are better at recognizing it looking back than at the time. That’s sure true of me.

      Thank you for your supportive comment, I really appreciate it 🙂
      I pray that we will always see the roads God has placed us on.

    • Hi Patty! Oh my, what a nice thing to say! You made my day my friend. Thank you 🙂

      I’m really happy you liked the post today.
      Happy May (and better weather?),

    • Hi Margie! I’m so sorry you had a bad day…that’s not fun. I’m glad this post could encourage you, and I pray that today will be a better day for you.

      Thank you for your loving comment too my friend,

  9. Love this Ceil! ♥ I have been thinking a lot lately about learning to live with much, much less; to simplify and learn to be satisfied with having less and valuing the things I do have. All this “stuff” requires time and effort that I’d rather spend elsewhere. Not only do we value what we have when we have less of it, but I think that we become more truly grateful for it and aware of the abundance that we have been blessed with. Gratefulness translates into generosity, a trait which I want to cultivate!! ♥

    Blessings and bunches of hugs sweet sister!

    • Hi Denise! I like your plan! I think the older I get, the more I realize I have much more than I’ll ever need (or use). My Dad is at the point where he doesn’t want anything for his birthday/Christmas because he knows he’s just got too much.

      I like how you connect gratefulness and generosity. One does lead to the other…great wisdom there.
      Thank you for your generous comment today 🙂

    • Hi Lulu! Great way to change your question from giving up to action. I love that. Closed doors don’t mean to stop. They mean maybe I’ll have to get creative.

      I hope I’ll always look for his purpose in my life, just like you do 🙂


  10. “Have you ever faced a slammed door? I’m sure you have. Maybe you’re staring at one right now”
    Haha 😀 you made me laugh because, there is a door that is closed for me – with the big lock! sometimes God wants me to move just like the Olympian did, the key is my heart decision – Do I want to win? I do but I need to push myself to be brave like the Olympian. ( I feel like you take my head to think about this)
    it’s not always easy to know that God is opening the window, I just need to be like you sit quietly in pray.

    Thanks for sharin Ceil 🙂 You’re blessing to me as walys.

    • Hi Delvalina! I think God is constantly calling us to be brave. Seeing the locked door calls for another way, and that takes new eyes. New vision. New bravery!

      Prayer and listening for the Lord’s best way is the right direction. I know you’ll figure it out with him.
      Blessings my friend! Always good to see you 🙂

    • Hi Debby! (I always love seeing your ladybug…we called my daughter “Bug” when she was little after the ladybugs!)

      I’m so glad this post served to inspire you, thank you for sharing that in your comment. It really makes me happy 🙂

      Have a peaceful evening,

  11. Oh, I so get it! I feel like I’m staring at several closed doors right now. But sometimes I wonder, maybe I’m the one who closed them. Maybe in fear of walking through them into something unknown, I’ve just closed the door and stayed where things are familiar. Hmmm…just had that thought, gonna have to ponder it for awhile!

    Anyway, in it all we must remember that God always has a path to follow. One step at a time, He leads us.


    • Hi Sharon! What an interesting thought…that maybe I shut the door like you, instead of thinking that God did. I like that! You are going to make me think about that idea myself…

      I pray that we will both be led where God needs us most 🙂

  12. What an excellent example of releasing something we think we need, only to discover we didn’t really need it after all. I’ll have to think about that some more. Thanks, Ceil!

    • Hi Lisa! It is a very intriguing concept, isn’t it? I’m sure there are many things in my life that I think I can’t live without. But with God, I can always find a way to do without it, just like this young skier. Such an inspiration 🙂

      So nice to see you here today!

  13. Ceil, I love reading your post because they are so inspirational. In a season of “No”, my doors and windows seemed to be blocked off, so I had to dig a hole through the ceiling, or at least it felt like it. 🙂

    Thanks for sharing such an encouraging post.

    • Hi Marilyn! I am sure that God loved your tenacity! I know I do. Most people would give up, but not you. What an inspiration you are to me!

      I think we encourage each other, don’t you?
      Have a restful night 🙂

      • Ceil, we absolutely encourage each other! That’s the beauty in loving God, because He is the one person we have in common and we share our lives about how He’s impacted us in some form or another. I appreciate your writings and I’m always inspired here on your blog. Thank you!

  14. This is a wonderful post and so very encouraging to me. My favorite line:
    “And like the Lord planned all along, I’ll gain the wisdom that tells me God had to brick up that door. If he didn’t, I’d never leave it.”
    Thanks, Ceil!

    • Hi Mary! I like that line because it’s so true for me. I am generally pretty conservative. If it’s working, I don’t tend to change it. God knows that, so I’ve seen my share of slammed doors.

      Thank you for your encouraging words tonight, I really appreciate them.


  15. This post came at the perfect time! We have faced a lot of slammed doors in our life. Even recently, my husband was just laid off work. Again. We have no clue what the future holds for us now, but the good news is he has been able to help me get my book ready for the launch date by doing all the things around here that I normally do that take up so much of my time. Now I am freer to spend time on book edits and networking. But I’m praying constantly for guidance and help because my husband needs to find a suitable job that makes him happy.

    • Hi Marsha! I am so sorry about your husbands job loss. I completely understand…my husband has been out of work too. I will add you and yours to my prayer list for sure.

      Best of blessings on your book launch! I am so glad that your husband can be a great help to you now. You can share this wonderful journey to book author together. So proud of you!!

  16. Hi Ceil, I loved watching this skier during the Olympics. He was fascinating. It occurred to me after watching him, why do the other skiers use poles? Some are not even using them, but just holding them as security. I love that God always gives us an open door – if only we will quiet our mind to hear Him. His perspective on things can be so unique. Blessings to you, Ceil.

    • Hi Kim! You are the first one to recognize this story, Yay! You looked at it from another way…like no one else should need them either. The Spirit is so good to all of us, giving us a perspective that rings true.

      Blessings on your weekend adventure my friend,

  17. What a great post! I had not read about this courageous man. Wow!

    I used to think my chatty nature was a liability, since my family made fun of me so often. Now I realize it’s an asset; since the Lord called me to communicate his love to a million people. I can’t do that wihout chatting!

    • Hi Jeanette! You just don’t know how God will use you, right? I’m sure this skier has no idea how he encouraged me in faith. And you had no idea how God would use your gifts either…

      But he does, and that’s the beauty of his life in us 🙂

  18. I just love your blog. All of your posts are so thought provoking! This one in particular spoke to me. I have a lot of “why me” people in my family. My husband and I feel (and I’ve blogged about this as well) that, as Christians, it’s okay to be scared, but to question “why me” means you are questioning God’s plan.

    • Hi Lisa! Thank you for your lovely comment! I’m glad this post spoke to you in some way. You make a good point about not wanting to question God’s plan. I still need to work on doing that better. It’s a great thing that The Lord is so patient with me.

      Thank you for your visit today!

  19. I’ve faced many closed doors and sometimes get weary looking for that window. And yet I will rejoice in God my Savior! Thank you for what you have shared here.

    • Hi Susan! I know what you mean, believe me. I’m looking at a closed door right now myself. I haven’t found the window, but I know it will come. In the meantime, I’ll rejoice in The Lord with you 🙂

      Thank you for your visit today!

  20. Great story, and great perspective. Some of the hardest things in life have made way for the greatest of God’s blessings. It’s hard to imagine the story of King David and it’s impact without Goliath, isn’t it? We all get to face our giants, they’re just not usually as big and deadly as Goliath! Good one, Ceil.

    • Hi Floyd! Good point Floyd. We all see how strong we are when we are faced with bad things. Anyone can stay happy when all the doors are opened wide. It’s those closed ones that show me how much faith I really have.

      Thank goodness my challenges aren’t Goliath sized!
      Good to see you my friend,

  21. Hi Ceil! Thank you for this – your posts are always so encouraging and they help me to look at things from a different perspective. You bring a big dose of sunshine into the lives of your readers!

    • Hi Mary! Thank you so much for your lovely comments, you are so kind. I know that we both want to encourage, so it’s great to be connected through our blogs.

      I hope you are having a wonderful weekend 🙂

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