This is a guest article written by a dear friend who allowed us to share these notes after we heard him preach this message at the funeral of a Christian brother in the Lord.
Detail from Christ at the Door, stained glass window at Emmanuel-Howard Park United Church, Toronto
There are four doors we wish to consider today:
- The door of life
- The door of our heart
- The door of death
- The door of Heaven
Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hear my voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with me. (Revelation 3:20)
We human beings are curious creatures. We always want to know what is on the other side of a closed door, don’t we? I know I do. This morning I wish to liken our travel through life as a journey through various doors.
We’ll begin at the door of life.
When we offer that first newborn cry, Mother proudly takes us in her arms, gently calming her little one. As we grow and learn in those early years, broadening our scope of knowledge, we come to trust our parents. We realize that they know a lot more than we do. We know they love us, and we trust that they want the best for us–even when we don’t get our own way. We continue to grow, furthering our education and preparing to make our contribution to mankind.
Then comes the greatest decision of our entire life: The decision upon which all other decisions depend. The decision upon which our eternal destiny depends.
The second door is the door of our heart.
Many have seen the picture of Jesus standing at the door knocking. If you carefully examine this picture, you will notice that there is no latch on the outside of this door.* He won’t just come in uninvited. You must open your heart from the inside! We see Jesus Christ standing, knocking, waiting. He offers, “Come unto me. If any man will open the door I will come in.” (adapted from Revelation 3:20)
Third is the door of death.
Parting always brings sorrow. Although the death of a loved one is something we will all face one day, Jesus has promised a Comforter. Jesus said, “Nevertheless I tell you the truth; It is expedient for you that I go away: for if I go not away, the Comforter will not come unto you; but if I depart, I will send Him unto you.” (John 16:7) The Lord has promised—we may have the Comforter for the asking.
If the Lord tarries, we must each go through the door of death as well. Are we ready?
Finally awaits the door of Heaven.
For each who has opened his or her heart’s door to Jesus, the door of Heaven swings freely ajar, and Jesus extends the invitation to whosoever will. “And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away.” (Revelation 21:4)
As we remember our lost loved ones, and as we consider the doors of our life, may God grant that not one of us will fail to open our heart’s door to Jesus. We have real hope if we come to Jesus, confess our sins to Him, make Him our Savior, and walk through life with Him. He will see us through death’s door and be waiting to welcome us at Heaven’s. Praise the Lord!
Copyright © 2023
* View Warner Sallman’s Christ at Heart’s Door, the painting referenced above, here.