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  • Writer's pictureDavid and Marilynn Chadwick

Strong in the Lord: Doors of Protection

by Marilynn Chadwick

Go, my people, enter your rooms and shut the doors behind you... (Isaiah 26:20 NIV). 

I’ll say it again. Some of God’s best miracles happen behind closed doors. Jesus instructed his disciples to go into their room and shut the door when they prayed. Their Father, who "sees in secret,” would reward them, he promised. We may discover God gives us strength when we're out of sight. Hidden from people. Away from distractions.

We've been looking at some of the ways God empowers us and makes us strong. But occasionally, he puts us behind a closed door not just to strengthen us, but to protect us from a situation that is about to get dangerous. Sometimes, when God plans to judge sin, he tells us to shut the door to protect us from his wrath. “Wait a minute,” you may be saying. “You mean God judges sin here and now—not just in eternity?” You bet. In fact, the Bible is filled with examples of people whose hearts grew so hard that they eventually got what was coming to them in this life. In real time. And in eternity.

Think about the massive flood during the dark days of Noah. Or the incineration of the corrupt Sodom and Gomorrah. Remember God's instructions to the children of Israel while slaves in Egypt. “Take a bunch of hyssop and dip it in the blood that is in the basin, and touch the lintel and the two doorposts with the blood that is in the basin. None of you shall go out of the door of his house until the morning” (Exodus 12:22 ESV). In other words, "Shut the door and stay put!" God was about to do two very dramatic things. 

First, he would judge the Egyptians for their refusal to heed his repeated warnings to release the Jews. He sent a destroying angel to strike down the firstborn son of each Egyptian home, passing over those homes that had blood on their door. The children of Israel could finally leave after hundreds of years of slavery—and begin their journey to the Promised Land. Second, he gave the Israelites a foreshadowing of the redemption which would take place through the coming Messiah. The blood of the Lamb of God, Jesus, would bring forgiveness of sin and protect people from God’s wrath forever. 

God may shut the door for a season to protect us. The prophet Isaiah put it this way: “Go, my people, enter your rooms and shut the doors behind you; hide yourselves for a little while until his wrath has passed by. See, the Lord is coming out of his dwelling to punish the people of the earth for their sins” (Isaiah 26:20, 21 NIV).

My friend, are you discouraged by that "shut door" in your life? Perhaps God seems to have knocked you off course in a relationship. Or a plan. Or a dearly held dream. But as my husband David is fond of saying, “Rejection is God’s protection.” God may temporarily take us out of the game. He sometimes strengthens us by shielding us while he cleans up a mess that is not of our making.

So be patient. Seek the Lord. Use this time to grow strong. To prepare for the purpose that awaits you as soon as this storm is over. And don't forget to look for miracles behind closed doors. If you’re sidelined, take heart. Perhaps God is calling you to “go to your room” to draw you to himself. Maybe he has put you into hiding and doesn’t want you harmed. Always remember, “the Lord knows how to rescue the godly from trials, and to keep the unrighteous under punishment until the day of judgment” (2 Peter 2:9 ESV).  

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