HAVE you ever come to a closed door? A hopeless situation? An unanswerable question? I know I have. Twice I faced a closed door -- literally. Both times I learned valuable lessons from my efforts to ``walk through.'' The first time I was trapped in a room with only one exit. The harder I pushed, the tighter the door stuck. Finally I threw my weight against it with such violence I fell backward to the floor. The force of the fall wakened me. I had been dreaming!
As I lay in bed, grateful the nightmare was over, I thought how Christ Jesus had appeared to his disciples ``when the doors were shut.''1 I was certain no one else could walk through closed doors, at least not at this present time, but thinking about it reminded me of an idea that had always intrigued me.
Mary Baker Eddy, the Discoverer and Founder of Christian Science, writes: ``Christian Science translates Mind, God, to mortals. It is the infinite calculus defining the line, plane, space, and fourth dimension of Spirit.''2 I knew from past experience that the important thing is to gain a better understanding of God. Christian Science ``translates Mind, God, to mortals'' by explaining that Mind, which is God, good, is the real source of man's intelligence. All true and good thought has its source in divine Mind, so it can never be obstructed. Push, pressure, and human will are powerless to extract us from what seems a hopeless situation. The ideas of divine Mind, however, are always available to lead us out when we are humbly willing to listen for divine direction.
The second closed door I faced was no dream! One cold February day a cutting wind off the ocean whipped around me as I shook and wiggled the key in the front door lock, trying to get the door open. It was the wrong key! I called my husband from a roadside telephone to get the phone number of a man who worked around our house during the summer months. ``It's in the desk,'' my husband said, ``behind that locked door!'' No help there. Now, before giving up and driving the one hundred and fifty miles to where my husband was, I decided to pray.
I began by knowing that God is the only Mind of man, therefore there are no mysteries, no unanswerable questions, no insurmountable obstructions. As I prayed, I thought to check with the realtor from whom we had purchased the property several years earlier. Another closed door! ``All keys are destroyed immediately after a sale,'' I was told. However, as I started to drive away from their office, continuing to pray, the salesperson ran out calling me. ``I suddenly remembered,'' he said, ``that your place was originally our sales office. So I looked among the salemen's keys and found this.'' He held up a large metal ring. On it were seven keys to my front door. I didn't have any further difficulty getting through that door. Once I was inside I called my husband. When I told him what had happened, he laughed as he told me the workman was on his way over with an eighth key!
In the Bible we read, ``Behold, I have set before thee an open door, and no man can shut it.''3 The more clearly we understand that God is the only Mind, the more frequently we will be able to overcome obstructions in our lives, whatever form they take. And in the proportion that we learn to listen humbly for and follow Mind's direction, we will cease to be defeated by closed doors of any kind.
1John 20:19. 2Miscellaneous Writings, p. 22. 3Revelation 3:8.