Frankie Mazzapica - Locked In A Room With Open Doors
Thank you for tuning in today. My name is Frankie Mazzapica. The title of the message is "Locked in a Room with Open Doors". Locked in a Room with Open Doors. I'll tell you where I'm getting this message from. It's in... where is it? It's in John chapter 20, verses 19 through 22. This whole scene takes place on Resurrection Sunday. Jesus has risen from the grave that morning, but the disciples don't know it yet. And so, the scripture reads in verse 19, it says this. That that evening, the disciples were meeting in a room with locked doors because they were afraid of the Jewish leaders. See, it was the Jewish leaders that betrayed Jesus, grabbed him, and brought him to Caesar and Pilate to have him crucified.
And so, the disciples were afraid that because they followed Jesus, the same was gonna happen to them. Suddenly, the scriptures say, Jesus appeared among them and said, "Peace be unto you". The reason why he said "peace be unto you" is they're in a room with the doors locked, and all of a sudden, Jesus who's supposed to be dead, poof, that's the best thing that Jesus could have said under that situation. Peace be unto you. And as Jesus spoke, he showed them the scars in his hands and in his side. And he said, again, to them, "Peace be unto you, for I am sending you just as the Father has sent me". And then he breathed on them and said, "Receive the Holy Spirit". They were in a room with locked doors.
I have two major points, and we've got some sub-points we're gonna stick in there, but the two major points are question number one, or the first one's a question. Have you locked yourself in a room? And the second point that I'm gonna make... it's not gonna be a long sermon. The second point I'm gonna make is there are open doors for you. So, let's unpack the first one. Have you locked yourself in a room? Oftentimes, we lock our self in a room because of the experiences that we've had, and I want to talk about two particular experiences. The first one is fear. We lock ourself in a room because we are afraid, oftentimes, of what has happened before is going to happen again.
If you've been divorced, you know exactly what I'm talking about. There's a certain part of you that you wanna hold back because what has happened before, the hurt that you experienced before, you don't want to experience that again. Stepping into a new season. Should I quit my job to take another job? Oftentimes, the fear of the unknown is worse then the unhappiness of the present. Fear has a way of locking ourselves into a room where we don't want to take a step forward. We don't want to stretch our faith, because we're afraid that the Lord will disappoint us. Nobody on this earth, or nobody who has ever breathed air, has ever received everything they asked for. With the exception of Jesus, but he was 100% God and 100% man at the same time. We're only 100% human.
There's no human that's ever received everything they've asked for, and that's a critical thing because, oftentimes, we're not upset with the Lord for not answering all of our prayers, but we are upset that he didn't answer a particular prayer, a prayer that we wanted more than we even wanted food at the time, and that didn't come through for us, and because God didn't come through in that critical moment of your life, for whatever reason, some of you can look back and you can understand clearly why God didn't come through, but sometimes, you're still living your life and you don't know why he didn't come through. It makes absolutely no sense at all. So, mentally, you said, "I am not going to trust him fully ever again because I'm afraid he will disappoint me".
A friend can backstab you one time, and if it's deep enough, you will make sure that you lock yourself in a room of fear to say, "I'm not going to trust anyone fully ever again". If you lose a job, if you get fired, you live, oftentimes, you live the rest of your life scared that it's gonna happen again. If you grew up poor, my family didn't have a lot growing up. If you grew up poor, oftentimes, you will squeeze a dollar bill until you get two out of it, afraid to spend any money. You buy the cheapest event, everything. You can afford more, but you buy the cheapest because you don't ever want to experience, what you experienced as a child. You think that it's all gonna come back again. If you have a series of bad dreams, you're afraid to go to sleep because you don't want to have those bad dreams again. You lock yourself into a room.
You see, fear is an illusion that is of the greatest power that causes us to freeze up. Fear is the greatest illusion. How is that the greatest illusion? Because 95% of the time, and I don't like percentages that end in a zero or in a five, but I read about it. I read about it, and it was a broad swipe that 95... let's just say 93 because I don't like 95. Ninety-three percent of the time, our fears never manifest. They never manifest. Put your hands together if you know that that's true. They never manifest. They hold us bondage, but they never ever manifest. Did you know that fear is a spirit? It's not a natural thought. It is an actual spirit of fear that people are gonna betray you, a fear that what is lost is not gonna come back. That is a spirit. It's not just you thinking. It's the devil whispering.
How do we know that? 2 Timothy chapter 1, verse 6, the Bible says that God has not given you a spirit of fear but of power, love, and a sound mind. He hasn't given you a spirit. So, if he says, "I have not given you a spirit," that means fear is a spirit. Everybody, say "fear is a spirit". One, two, three. That sounded really good. Let's say it again. One, two, three. Fear is a spirit. The ninth president of the United States only served in office for 31 days. That's it. Thirty one days. It was President Harrison. He had this fear that gripped him, and it also was in his wife. They both had a fear of electricity. It was new to the society, and they did not trust it, so they refused to touch any light switches.
So, if their help staff was not there to turn the switch off for them, they would go to sleep in the light. They would not touch it. Fear gripped them. It was new. It was something that they couldn't figure out. It was something that they couldn't predict, in their own mind. It gripped them. I read a story recently of this little five-year-old boy. He was in the kitchen with his mother, and the mother was cooking, and the mom said to Little Johnny, "Would you go open up the cabinet and get me a can of tomato soup"? He said back to his mom, "I don't want to go into the cabinet. It's dark in there, and I'm afraid to go in". And she says, "Don't worry about it. Jesus is with you". And so, he said, "Okay". So, he walked up to the cabinet. He peeked inside. It was jet black, and he said, "Jesus, if you're in there, would you hand me a can of tomato soup"? You know, it is astounding on how fear grips us.
The second thing that I want to talk about that we often lock ourselves in is unforgiveness. Did you know that unforgiveness is an unforgivable sin? Unforgiveness is an unforgivable sin. In Matthew chapter six, verse 15, it says if you refuse to forgive others, the Lord will not forgive you of your sins. Now, oftentimes, people say, "I've forgiven everybody except for that one person, and I'll never forgive him. I'll never forgive her". You know, these people that you say "I'll never forgive," they may indeed be a very evil person that did something very evil to you. There are divine connections where God brings one person, one friend, one spouse, brings them together and said, "These two are gonna be married as a divine connection".
Sometimes it'll be a divine friendship that God brings together, but just as there are divine connections. There's also divine disconnections. And so, if that person was indeed evil, we are not saying to forgive them and invite them back in. You can leave them 50 miles, 100 miles, 500 miles away from you, and it might be the godly thing to do. However, it is ungodly to be unforgiving. We have to forgive. You say, "Well, you don't even know what they did". In Luke chapter 6, verse 28, it says, "Bless those who curse you". Bless those who curse you, and pray for those who have hurt you. People often get themselves, and they locked themselves in a room of fear, a room of unforgiveness.
You know, I come from Italian descent, and it is very common for my family tree to put someone on a blacklist and not permit anyone to even say their name. Do not even say their name. Do not refer to them, and this is the line. They are dead to me. They are dead to me. You know, it's gonna be a scary moment when the members of my family stand before the Lord, because he's gonna look at 'em and say, "Because you did not forgive them, I am not going to forgive you of your sin". Can you believe that?
That holding unforgiveness is the one thing that is unforgivable. Oftentimes when someone wants freedom, they feel a heaviness on their shoulders. They feel like they are being inflicted, or tormented by the enemy. The number-one thing that they have to do is they have to forgive. Whenever I lead someone in a prayer to experience freedom, one of the first things that I have them repeat is "Lord, I forgive all others". And ask them. I want you to think about who they are and say their names. "I forgive all others, even as I want you to forgive me. So, forgive me now and cleanse me with your blood".
I have a pastor friend of mine. He's stewarding one of the greatest revivals in our country right now. It's a revival. It's a very unique revival. He had a vision that his church was built many years ago, and in the way churches were built in those days, there's a baptismal tank just behind the stage or on the side of the stage. Nowadays, we bring in a portable baptismal tank, and we usually do it outside, and it's real pretty, and everybody in the church gathers around in a full circle, and we have celebratory music, but one day, he was in his sanctuary, and he looked on the stage and he saw fire on top of the stage, and he knew the Lord was doing something special on... he saw the fire on top of the waters of the baptism, and he knew God was doing something special in those waters.
He didn't know what, but he told the church, and everyone in the church lined up to be baptized, and the people who were sick were well. The people who were tormented, or oppressed, by a demon were freed. It was these miraculous moments, if they didn't need healing and they didn't need freedom, then they would come out and they would feel closer to the Lord, and he told me just this past week, he said, "When this first started happening, I was so afraid that it would stop happening, that it would just happened just for a couple of weeks, and I was praying about that, and the Lord told me, 'I want you to go ask those pastors down the street. I want you to go ask them to forgive you.'" And he says, "I told the Lord, 'I don't need to ask them to forgive me. They need to come over here and and apologize to me. They're the ones who hurt me. Those three pastors...'"
I don't remember how many there were. There were more than two, but I think you are more than two, less than five, five or less, but he was, "'Those pastors are the one that hurt me. Why should I go apologize to them?'" And the Lord said to him, "If you don't go apologize, I'm taking my hand off the waters". Pew, he went down the street. His car was on before the door shut behind him. He got to them and sat down with every single one of 'em and profusely apologized for everything he could think of. He didn't care what their response was gonna be. He didn't think about what their response was gonna be. He didn't care. He was bein' obedient. He wanted to unlock that door.
And so, he started apologizing, and wouldn't you know that those pastors, they apologized back, and they said, "We've heard about what God is doing at your church and we want to help you. And so, we are gonna send all of our people to your church every single Sunday night to worship in your sanctuary and to help you any way you want with this baptism revival that's taking place". So, every Sunday night, five pastors from around the city send their churches to his church and sit in his sanctuary. Sunday morning, they worshipped together, but Sunday night they come in. And so, when my friend stands on his platform and he looks out into the crowd, he's looking at five churches, plus all the visitors and guests. Five churches.
Do you think he had any idea that that was gonna happen if he apologized? Do you think he had any idea that when he unlocked that unforgiveness and came out and started forgiving others that God was gonna open up a door for him that was far bigger than what his imagination could ever lead him to? Can I remind you of a scripture that you probably already know. It's in Ephesians chapter 3, verse 20. It says this, that God is able. He is able to do exceedingly, abundantly more than we can ask, think, or imagine. He is able. You cannot imagine what God has in store for you. If you can imagine your best-case scenario, that is like filling up a thimble full of water when God has a waterfall planned out for you. If you can imagine it, that's what you can imagine. That's simple stuff. You go, "No, no, no, no, what...I have a big imagination, Frankie".
If you can imagine it, it's not big enough. If you can imagine a plan, it's not God's plan. God's plan for you is way bigger than that, but it does require us unlocking this closed door. He looked at his disciples after he stepped into this locked room, and he said, "Just as the Father has sent me, so I'm sending you. I'm opening up doors for you. I'm blessing you. I'm anointing you. I'm paving the way before you. I got an assignment for you. I'm excited about... just the same way that I've been walking around, healing people, praying for people, changing lives, that's your assignment. That's your, but you gotta get out of this room. You gotta get out of this room".
Sometimes people lock themselves in a room of guilt. Guilty for things that they did 20 years ago, 10 years ago, 30 years ago, last night, last week. You're just feel guilty because of something you did. You feel guilty because you can't be as consistent as you want to be for the Lord. So, you feel guilty. "You think to yourself, I'm not gonna go to church. I'm not gonna ask for forgiveness because I already know me. As soon as I ask for forgiveness, I'm going to do it again. I can't forgive myself. I feel guilty. I'm inconsistent. I go to church and I look around, and I'm like, aw, these people are bein' faithful. They're being consistent, and I'm not". You have locked yourself in a room because guilt is not of God. It is not of God. I'll share a scripture with you.
It's in 2 Corinthians chapter 7, verse 10. It says this. Godly sorrow, godly guilt, leads to repentance and brings salvation and leaves no regret behind. Godly guilt is this sense of knowing, it's actually the Holy Spirit saying, "Come back to me. Worship me. Repent for that". That is godly guilt, and you have this sense of "I need to get right with God. I need to start praying again. I need to repent. I need to worship". That's godly guilty. It doesn't come with condemnation. When we respond to that, it leads to repentance. It brings salvation, and it leaves no regret behind. It leaves no guilt behind, but the end of that same verse says this, but worldly guilt leads to death.
Worldly guilt is when you just feel bad. You feel disgusted. You are embarrassed. You are humiliated. Your sins are in secret. You don't want anyone to know, and you feel like you're gonna do it again, and it's really bad, and you don't wanna even... that's worldly guilt that leads to death. Is it a physical death? Most, 99.9% of the time, it's not, but it is an emotional death. It is a spiritual death where you begin to give up on everything, but the Lord would say this in Revelation chapter 3, verse 7. It says, "I know all the things you do. I know all the things you do, and I have opened up a door for you, a door that no man can close. I know you have little strength, but you have not denied me, and you have kept my Word". He has opened a door for you. Can you put your hands together for that? You receive that.