Monday, March 5, 2012

The art of saying "no" and a resounding YES!

Last week, I talked about The art of saying "no". Today, I wanted to focus on the resounding yes portion of that statement.

As I mentioned last week, I have been learning how to say no, even if to myself, as life has become a different kind of busy with four small children. I have not ever been an expert at turning somone/or something down. On the flip side, I definitely need some work in the area of saying yes.

What I mean is that there have been many times that my lack of ability/courage to say no to something good causes me to say yes, but am I REALLY saying yes?!? In the past, I have found myself saying yes to something only to regret it later or complain about it. Many times, having to back out of the commitment because of being overwhelmed or just simply not having the passion behind it.

When I had a "revelation" that I was doing this, it kind of made me nauseous. I felt like I was being two-faced. I was accepting a responsibility with my words, but bitter about it in my heart. I was helping resentfully. I was obviously only saying yes out of pride, wanting to be a people pleaser and to show that I can "do it all".

The Bible talks pretty clearly about this in various passages throughout. For example:

...If you mean yes, say yes. If you mean no, say no. (James 5:12 NLV)

Seems pretty clear to me, right!?

But when you ask, you must believe and not doubt, because the one who doubts is like a wave of the sea that is blown and tossed by the wind. Such people should not expect to receive anything from the Lord. Such a person is double-minded and unstable in all they do.
(James 1 5-8 NLV)

This passage is talking about a little deeper of an issue, such as wavering loyalty between God and the world. In the same sense, however, it describes a double-minded person. In choices, big and small, I want to be sure about things when I commit to them. I don't want to commit resentfully, bitterly, begrudgingly, etc. I want to choose wisely and do so with a pure heart.

A quote by Penelope Stokes [from my hugs: Daily Inspirations for Moms devotional] reads:

"Does God care about all the responsibilities we have to juggle in our daily lives? Of course. But he cares more that our lives demonstrate balance, the ability to discern what is essential and give ourselves fully to it."

My challenge to you (and to myself) is to count the cost before you commit to do something (big or small) and when you choose to say a resounding yes, do so boldly and joyfully!

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