A Message for You — May 20, 2010

A window lets the light shine through

Courtland-Oakfield United Methodist Church

One of my favorite classic Far Side cartoons has a young man looking down, book in hand, leaning against a door at the Midvale School for the Gifted. He is pushing on the door and the sign just above his hand reads “PULL.”

Sometimes doors can be quite formidable for us. They may represent barriers or boundaries that we struggle to open or understand, let alone pass through.

The writer of Colossians asks directly for help finding a door to share good news: “Devote yourselves to prayer, keeping alert in it with thanksgiving. At the same time pray for us as well that God will open to us a door for the word, that we may declare the mystery of Christ, for which I am in prison” (Colossians 4:2-3).

Making assumptions about doors and how they do or do not open, we sometimes forget the obvious opportunity to pray for God to open a door for the Word—that is, prepare the way by providing “windows of opportunity” for the gospel (New Interpreter’s Bible). Sometimes opening a door starts with a window.

The Wolverine World Wide Family YMCA in Belmont has a small, lovely chapel. Many people are surprised that there is such a room in the facility. Offering a reminder that the organization’s mission is to put Christian principles into practice helps a little. Until Good Friday, April 2, the chapel was separated from the nautilus machines, drinking fountains, and long hallway leading to the locker rooms by a solid wooden door. People hesitated to open the door for fear of interrupting people who might be inside; you also could not tell if anyone was in there.

So, we decided to start the process of opening up the chapel by putting in a window with the YMCA logo.

At the dedication we recognized that the chapel window now would reveal the light and people on both sides of the door, seeking spiritual, mental and physical strength. Now we could see each other getting better. An invitation was made to devote time on both sides of the door.

If doors are frustrating your spiritual journey, consider putting in a window first to let the light shine through. You also may find people on the other side who are on a similar journey. God bless you in finding and sharing light for your path, and when you enter the YMCA Chapel, push the door open.

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