By Abi Frodsham, Jubilee Church Wirral
the closing doors
I have experienced many trials and tribulations throughout my faith journey, but I have triumphed over many of them with Christ at the centre of my life.
Over the past 3 years I’ve been fed up with hearing the question, "What do you want to do in the future?"
My answer: "I don’t know!"
But the real answer is whatever God has planned for me.
Jeremiah 29:11 "For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you a hope and a future".
I’ve had to make decisions. What do I study at college? If I study at all, do I find a job? Or do I go to uni? Do I travel? Do I just play golf?
So many questions and decisions to make. Sometimes I’ve searched for answers from God, sometimes I’ve sought answers from friends, my parents, teachers. The list is endless but the only answers that have been correct have come from God.
But how do I know if it's what God wants me to do and not what I want to do?
The answer: I am praying that God will close the door! For things which are not His plan for me.
Sometimes you have to push the door to try it and see if it opens before you can go in.
It’s like when you go to the public toilets in the ladies bathroom, walking up and down the cubicles until you find one that's open. A weird analogy but it works! Sorry men…
Sometimes the door will slam in your face and you won't even get to even try it. Sometimes you will take one step in the door and then it will close, other times the door swings open and you can walk straight in.
I've had this experience searching for universities. I debated for a long time whether I should go and what I should study as my mind wasn't set on what I wanted to do and I was unsure.
I prayed about it and waited and then had a picture of myself on graduation day and I really felt like I wanted to go to uni and graduate and have that achievement.
But then the question came, when do I go to uni? So then I prayed for a clear sign as to what to do - as I really wanted to travel and take a bit of a gap year and then see what I want to do, but God had other plans for me.
Covid happened about one month after submitting my applications to uni. I had 3 offers from different uni's by this point, and then we were put in lockdown and everything started to close.
I had low hopes of travelling over summer at this point, but was still thinking it would all be over by then and might still work out. But then it came to me having to either accept my uni offers or save them for the second year and, at this point in May, it was pretty clear that I probably wasn't going to be able to travel and that Covid was staying a while, so it was sensible to go to uni and start in September 2020.
After a national lockdown lasting 4 months I finally realised that God wanted me to go to uni and experience it from home. I visited a total of 8 times over the whole year and I am still yet to sit in a classroom with my fellow students, but I am trusting in God this will happen at the right time.
I did still enjoy my experience and I can see that God was definitely in my decision to go. I have now completed my first year at uni and I am looking forward to moving into uni next year studying Sports Coaching and Development at the University of Central Lancashire.
So if, like me, you have decisions to make, I would like to encourage you to trust in God and try the door – but pray that God will open the right doors and guide you through the right ones.
Abi Frodsham, Jubilee Church Wirral