Keep on asking, and you will receive what you ask for. Keep on seeking, and you will find. Keep on knocking, and the door will be opened to you.—Matthew 7:7 NLT
Open doors! Immigrants who pray ask God to help them in finding open doors at their destination when they arrive there. Those who do not have a visa that officially authorizes their entry understand that they will find a closed door. Nevertheless, they hope where there is no hope, believing that God will make a paths where there is none, a raft where there is no bridge, a shortcut that will allow them to avoid long and impassable roads.
The unauthorized immigrant, just like the one who receives the warmest welcome, depends on open doors–to work, to education, to the provision of basic needs. Not everyone has the courage and faith to risk everything to seek a future in an unknown country, in the spaces behind closed doors.
It is not likely that Jesus was thinking about immigrants when he encouraged his disciples not to give up in prayer, but rather to keep on asking, seeking, and knocking. But his counsel to them fits perfectly in the context of the immigrant. Christian faith does not offer instant riches, nor minute-made solutions, nor immediate finds. Faith is not a shortcut. It is power for the long road. Those who do not give up, who keep believing in the goodness of their Father God, even when all the doors seem closed, in the end will enter into the Promised Land.
Copyright©2013 by Joseph L. Castleberry. All rights reserved. firstname.lastname@example.org
Dr. Joseph Castleberry is President of Northwest University in Kirkland, Washington. He is the author of The New Pilgrims: How Immigrants are Renewing America’s Faith (forthcoming in August 2015, Worthy Publishing). Follow him on Twitter @DrCastleberry and at http://www.facebook.com/Joseph.Castleberry.