By Tim Seevers
On a recent mission trip to Alabama, our church youth and adults were spread out all over the city of Birmingham working on houses. Some were roofing, some painting, some building a wheelchair ramp, and others leading Vacation Bible School among a group of inner-city youth.
While our group was at the church, several of them were working on the roof of a house next door. I didn’t have anything to do at the time, so I sat on the porch of one of the neighbors who was interested in watching the roofers.
I started a conversation with Miss Carter. She began to open up and tell me her story. Then she noticed the beaded bracelet I wore on my wrist and asked me about it. It was one of the salvation bracelets we made to give to the children during Vacation Bible School. That opened the door to share Christ with her.
That’s precisely what Paul was looking for. In the beginning of the book of Acts, Jesus said, “and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth” (Acts 1:8). Paul told the Corinthians that he wanted to come to them but was going to stay in Ephesus “because a great door for effective work has opened to me” (1 Corinthians 16:9). Effective doors are open to us every day. We just need to locate them and walk on in.
We had set out on a mission to accomplish something. So had Paul. He wanted to get to Rome. He wanted the opportunity to share the gospel with the Gentiles, to reach the uttermost parts of the world. God allowed him to reach his destination. God allowed him to share the gospel. God allowed him to fulfill his mission and Christ’s commission.
For two years he had great response to the gospel he preached. Whether we are in the marketplace, on a mission trip, or on a neighbor’s porch, God will give us an open door. We just need to make the most of it.
Tim Seevers is the senior minister of the Sherman Church of Christ in Dry Ridge, Kentucky. He and his wife, Peggy, have three adult children and six grandchildren.