I think one of the most jarring noises is that of a door slamming shut. Not only can you hear the sudden thud, you feel it. Your eyes squeeze closed in a wince. Your body tenses momentarily as your nervous system deals with the mini aftershock until a few seconds can pass and you readjust.
Sometimes, a slammed door is just the result of a strong wind blowing it closed, or a broken hinge that needs tending. Other times, the slamming comes from a place of anger or fear in a desire to keep something (or someone) out of a space.
But sometimes, the door slams behind us due to our preoccupation with getting inside and we don’t even notice it close. I’m not talking about a physical door here. I’m talking the door of opportunity. We’re so anxious to get in that the moment we step through the “door”, we forget someone might be right behind us and could get caught in the backdraft of the door closing.
It’s not that we’re necessarily being exclusionary. We’ve worked hard to get through that door and our first (and often times understandable) emotion is one of relief to have finally made it past the threshold of a space we’ve been longing for. But it shouldn’t stop there.
This week, I heard someone say: “My mantra is ‘Keep the door open’.” At first, I thought she meant, “Keep your options open”, which is an awesome sentiment. But what she really meant was this: extend a hand backward and help pull that next person behind you up and through the door you have worked so hard to get through.
Good Lord, I LOVE that. Whether it’s a vocational, societal, or spiritual door. Doesn’t matter. All that matters is this:
This is the door I want you to mind, sisters. I believe in the transformative power of women’s ministry, regardless of religion, race, age, or social standing. I believe in the power we have to lift each other up and extend a hand to pull others through with us. And I believe that if you’ve made it past the doorway, you have a responsibility to keep it open for the ones still in line behind you who are trying – just as hard as you did – to step through.
Want a helping of truth? Here it is: There’s room for all of us. And this is awesomely freeing news for those of us who sometimes worry there isn’t enough space in the room to accommodate the masses. Or maybe we’re worried the air will be taken up by those with bigger lungs. But, girls. There IS enough room for all of us and everything we each bring to the space.
So mind the door.
Why? Because only YOU can “do YOU”, regardless of who else is in the room. And do you want to know what else? You can really only do YOU when everyone else in there is doing their own “THEM”, too. (You’re following me, right?!)
Mind. The. Door.
This is my new mantra. And it fits beautifully with my old one: “If not you, then who?” (Esther 4:14)
So what does this “door minding” look like in action? Like this:
- See a need? Meet it.
- Walk through a door? Prop it open for the one who comes next.
- Spot someone starting out? Mentor her.
- See someone struggling? MIND. THE. DOOR. and bring her inside.
Because if not you, who will?
Have a blessed and DOOR-MINDING weekend, sister friends. I believe in you.
Peace, love, and SO MUCH JOY.
This post is dedicated to the biggest and best Door Minder I know: Patty Cavanagh. Love you and your heart, girl. Thanks for always minding the door.