The Open Door

“Then as I looked, I saw a door standing open in heaven…” (Revelation 4:1a NLT)

In a recent reading on my devotional calendar, I read: “Once God is everything to us, so that ‘in Him we live and move and have our being’ (Acts 17:28), the door to heaven will stand open before us as well.”

In yesterday’s post I asked the question “Whose kingdom are you seeking?” and we looked at Matthew 6:33. The verse above from Acts 17 addresses essentially the same issue but uses different wording.

Today I’d like to look at what these things mean in practical terms. What does it mean to be Christ’s “slave?” What does it mean to say that God is everything to me?

First, let me say it’s a process. It doesn’t happen overnight; however, the heart change necessary to initiate the process does have a definite point in time that it begins. What does that mean?

Virtually everything we do from day to day is tied in some way to desire. It can be sin’s pull to activate our evil desires or the Spirit’s pull to activate our desire to honor and please the Lord. But the Spirit can’t be active in a person’s heart and life who has never responded to Jesus’ invitation to join Him in God’s activity on this earth.

How does that happen? It begins through repentance and belief, followed by submission to the Lord’s will and purposes and obedience to His directives. How do we understand what that looks like? Primarily through the Bible, God’s written Word; however, since this isn’t the focus of this post, let me encourage you to look through previous posts where I’ve dealt with these subjects. As always, if you have questions or concerns, email me at

Photo by Andres Ayrton on

So, assuming you’ve made a life-long commitment to Jesus and your heart’s desire is to follow Him as closely as possible, that basically is what it means “to live and move and have our being” in Jesus or for God to be our “everything.” But, as with any new direction we desire to take, there will be obstacles.

As Paul wrote in 2 Corinthians 10:5, our goal is to: “…destroy every proud obstacle that keeps people from knowing God. We capture their rebellious thoughts and teach them to obey Christ.” That obviously takes time, but everything worthwhile that we do has to have a starting point and that point is salvation in Christ alone through faith alone.

Two key words come to mind when thinking about starting out as a new believer in Christ. First, commitment, and second, determination. In some ways it’s like starting an exercise program or lifting weights. You don’t start trying to lift 300 lbs. For me, today, I’d be very pleased if I could lift the bar without any weights.

Commitment is a mindset that essentially says: “Whatever it takes, for however long it takes.” And determination essentially says: “However hard it gets and however much I want to quit; I’m going to keep moving forward.” Even if you’ve been walking with the Lord for a while, the best way to make the most progress in the shortest amount of time is to find a mentor, someone who is further along in their walk with the Lord, but solid in their commitment and unwavering in their determination to stay true to the Lord.

Additionally, a discipleship group to help guide you with Bible study, prayer, and other spiritual disciplines can be incredibly helpful. If your church has a “New Believer’s” class or the equivalent, check it out.

One last thing. Someone who is good at something makes it look easy, so just as with any sport, diet, exercise program, or even the learning of spiritual disciplines can look easy for a “pro,” it took them a long time to get there, and it’s going to take you a while as well. Be patient with yourself, and don’t allow yourself to get lazy.

God will help you and be with you every step of the way, even to the door in heaven that now stands open for you.

Blessings, Ed 😊

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