Locked Doors…a year later

This devotion was posted exactly a year ago on our blog:
My devotional that is very fitting…http://www.upperroom.org/devotional
The Locked Gate

Read Matthew 7:7-14

To him who by the power at work within us is able to accomplish abundantly far more than all we can ask or imagine, to him be glory.
-Ephesians 3:20-21 (NRSV)

AS a friend and I approached the entrance to the retreat center, we noticed the gate was closed with a chain draped around it. We stopped the car and wondered what to do. We honked the horn, but no one responded. We pressed the doorbell, but no one answered. We tried to phone the caretaker, but no one picked up.

After 10 minutes, we were beginning to get frustrated as the hot South African sun climbed higher in the sky. My friend walked up to the gate again and toyed with the padlock. To his surprise, the chain was not locked! He swung open the gate with ease and we entered the grounds, laughing heartily at our foolishness.

Throughout our lives, we encounter many closed doors, barred paths, and shuttered windows. But sometimes we assume that they are locked up tight; we don’t even try to open them first. Instead, like my friend and me on that summer day, we worry, fret, and sweat!

The truth is that we have the spirit of God within us. When we are bold enough to attempt what God asks, with God’s help, we will find gates swinging wide, pathways clearing, and windows thrown open.

Wes Magruder (Yaounde, Cameroon)

Lord, give us confidence and courage to attempt what you ask even when gates appear locked. Amen.

Thought for the Day
Through the power of the Holy Spirit, we can do far more than we imagine.


The day before this blog a year ago was picture time of when we first shaved Kevin’s head……not long before things progressed downhill very quickly.

I had a refreshing, yet emotional time in Toronto. Last night I drove straight home, and made a few stops along the way. First, at the Canadian superstore Kevin and I stopped at 2 years ago during our first trip together to see his cousin’s in Toronto where we surprised Linda. I remember buying this awesome lawnchair at that store.

Going these places without him just doesn’t feel right. Being up there without him, despite them being my family now, just doesn’t feel right. Such a loss without him there to join in the laughter.

I also took a scenic route and drove down Route 14 in New York state past Seneca Lake wine country and picked up 2 bottles for Kristi and I to enjoy here at home. I just happened to pass one of the barn companies the company I work for designs! So I stopped in to say hello-very cool.

When I was just 20 minutes outside of home I had to pull off the road. Emotional songs and driving at night, for whatever reason, lead to me breaking down tearfully alongside the road. I felt devastated. All the memories of past trips Kevin and I had made to Toronto just came back, and coming back without him, going there without him, being there without him, again, it didn’t feel right. It’s the new reality, and while my family will always be my family, without Kevin, something will always be missing.

I miss him dearly right now. The wave is large. Heading to the beach on Friday with my family will be good, but also difficult, again, knowing that Kevin should be there with us as a whole, but now will only be there with us in spirit.

Some doors will stay locked now until I can unlock them in heaven and walk through to see him again.

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