The Author

The Open Door

Last evening, I went into the garage to make sure that the door was down when I was dive-bombed by something that swooshed by my right ear. After my heart started beating again, I looked around to see if I could find the culprit. Finally, my eyes rested on a little brown bird that had taken refuge on a shelf that ran along the top of the garage wall. It looked more like a wren than a sparrow, though, mostly it looked frightened.

I tried all kinds of words to get it to fly its perch. “Come on, get out of here.” “All right, fun’s over, it’s time to go.” “Hurry up, I’ve got things to do.” “I’m not gonna wait all day; I’ve got to close the door.” Either the bird was deaf or doesn’t speak English. At any rate, I was left with a dilemma.

Should I close the door on him or leave it open all night on the chance that he might fly to freedom? It wasn’t an easy decision. Coop him up in the garage and all kinds of things might happen. Birds can leave a mess, if you know what I mean. If I left the door open, I left myself open to all kinds of possibilities. The bird could fly away, but all kinds of other things could come in. While we live in a safe neighborhood, there are animals that wander the night. There was also the possibility that a predator of the two-footed variety might decide to make a visit. I stood there for awhile, still cajoling the bird before I finally decided to leave the door open.

When I went to check this morning, the bird was gone. Sometime during the night, or perhaps as soon as I went back into the house, he had seized the opportunity of the open door. As I looked around to find that everything else was safe, I knew I had made the right decision.

I am reminded of a vision that John has in his Revelation. He sees Jesus standing at the door of a church’s – could just as easily be a person’s – life. In the vision Jesus says, “Look, I am standing at the door and I am knocking. Open the door, and see what happens.” (Rev. 3:20 paraphrase). It’s the test of the open door. A risk is always present. Open the door and all kinds of things might happen, some of them maybe even a little messy. But, there’s always the possibility that we open the door and we are set free.

Blessings, Sam