Franciscan 2016 New Year Song: It Opens by Craig Bickhardt

by Sister Julie Ann on January 1, 2016

This January 2016 Franciscan Sisters of Christian Charity invite you to listen to  a stream of It Opens by Craig Bickhardt. Fittingly, Pope Francis not only calls us to begin a Year of Mercy, but invites us to open the doors of our hearts to God’s abundant love.

About the Song ‘It Opens’

Cathedral Door of FaithThe wonderful thing about songs, if they are written with some integrity and a bit of poetry, is that they invite interpretation. A song is a doorway that doesn’t look like a door. What it opens to is up to you.

Many things are doorways in disguise. Sometimes you hit an obstacle and wonder “How did I end up here?” You get no answers until you realize that what’s stopping you is only the hard residue around your heart. It turns out to be composed of doubts and fears mixed with some inertia you’ve acquired out of bad habit. One day, perhaps because you have nothing to lose, you shoulder up against that resistance, push hard and it gives way so easily you’re stunned.

In our own way we learn that the unexpected and the unanticipated are usually good things. Nothing is locked to us as long as we have the will to act, a little faith and an accepting heart. Doors are mysteries, provocative and irresistible. But fables and fairy tales aside, there are no dragons behind them anymore. It’s usually quite safe to walk through.

– Craig Bickhardt, Glen Mills PA.

Craig Bickhardt Bio Link:


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St. Francis of Assisi loved the language of lyrics. If you have a favorite image that this song brings to mind, please send it to us here.


9 thoughts on “Franciscan 2016 New Year Song: It Opens by Craig Bickhardt”

  1. v.o. says:

    Pope Francis’ new year’s list of resolutions seems to fit here. Open the possibility of change for good:
    1. Don’t gossip.
    2. Finish your meals.
    3. Make time for others.
    4. Choose the ‘more humble’ purchase.
    5. Meet the poor ‘in the flesh.’
    6. Stop judging others.
    7. Befriend those who disagree.
    8. Make commitments, such as marriage. Have the courage ‘to swim against the tide.’ Have the courage to be happy.”
    9. Make it a habit to ‘ask the Lord.’ You too can ask the Lord: What do you want me to do? What path am I to follow?”
    10. Be happy. The true Christian, says the Pope, exudes great joy. “The Christian sings with joy, and walks, and carries this joy.”

  2. Sister Louise Hembrecht says:

    What a wonderful song to begin the New Year. It is such a positive approach to the New Year and to life in general. God opens many doors to us. Behind those doors are so many good things, so much grace. May we always be willing to open and walk through the doors God puts before us.

  3. annemarielom says:

    Love the lyrics… “it don’t look like a door but it opens”. Many things don’t look like opportunities but they are blessed and provide grace needed. I will listen to this more than once. Thank you!

  4. Sister Mardelle says:

    The song It Opens by Craig Bickhardt is a meditation on the life of any person but especially a follower of Jesus. Bickhardt commented, “The wonderful thing about songs … is that they invite interpretation.” I offer one reflection.

    Sometimes in discipleship the choice made is for the other. Your heart is crying but for the sake of others you enter into their lives with the joy that is buried deeply within you. You find a comfortable niche in life. But from the quiet stillness comes a yearning, a pull, or is it a push, to open your life to the challenge of the unknown. Drinking in life you respond to the present moment of freely and fully dancing the rhythm welling up from your spirit when you are call to step out and provide the tune you hear for others. “The spirit blows where it pleases.” “Opportunity rides the breeze.”

    The first time I listen to It Opens the phrase that held my attention was “The only thing life hinges on Is a shoulder’s push and faith that’s strong.” So many opportunities have presented themselves in my life. Most were welcomed. Some looked difficult and challenging. Some seemed like impossibilities. Some were humbling. Some tore at the very fiber of my being. However, each was a door; each waited for the proper time; each presented its message.

    May courage and faith walk with you as you live a disciple’s life.

  5. Kathy Malaske-Talkington says:

    Oh my gosh…I love the song, the singer and the message! It was meaningful to me, when reflecting on the faith journey I was on in 2014-2015! Thanks for sharing, Sr. Anne Marie! ???

  6. annemarielom says:

    You are welcome, Kathy. Thank you for posting.

  7. I must start by thanking Sr. Juliann for asking me to listen to this song and comment on it. I must admit that I don’t usually listen to these songs; my taste lies in music several centuries old. However, “It Opens” really strikes a chord with me as I look back on doors I have seen and opened — or sometimes just had to be shoved through because I was not looking or listening. “It Opens” is a song that I think will speak to any person who truly listens. My first thought on hearing this was of the advice I routinely gave to high school kids to not close doors on themselves by making poor choices along the way, As I listened to this song, I couldn’t help but say a prayer that those students have found the right doors for themselves along the way. In a book I just finished reading a wise “opa” (grandfather) advised his grandson to keep an open mind – but with some specific guidelines about how to do that without being deceived. I have no doubt that you who follow these pages are very much in tune with looking and listening to know what God wants for you. My prayer is that you will find and open those doors God is putting there for you. May God bless the song writer and singer and all of you!

  8. Thanks, Sr. Catherine. I,too, was captivated by the message.

  9. Sister Carmen Marie says:

    What a great song! This song made me think of the image of Jesus knocking on the door with no handle. We have to open the door so that He can come in. Everyday there are thousands of opportunities or “doors” to act on for God. Let’s get going!

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