The Word of God admonishes us to “let our yes be yes and our no be no.” That is truth we need to live by, as so often, we fail to be honest ~ we waver ~ then we are tossed to and fro. We often add emphasis to our yes or no to make our point. This is unnecessary and according to the Lord, comes only from the evil one.
We are not to swear by anything or anyone else ~ just to say yes or no.
Sometimes circumstances change though, and we have to change our minds. If that is the wise choice, then our answer may have to change along with the situation. Then, we must stand firm in that new answer ~ once again.
We may have to give a new answer ~ a different one. But in that moment, we still need to simply answer….. yes or no.
This will bring about a time of testing for us, friends. It is hard to stand by our answers, especially when they have to change. We get caught up in thinking that our first answer should remain no matter what happens.
But it can’t always be that way.
- The person who has cancer, and thought they would be able to continue to drive or attend PTA meetings for another six months…but the test results show that there needs to be a change of plans.
- The play you said you thought you could attend (on time) for your child’s drama performance, but traffic decided otherwise for you.
- The commitment you made months ago to help out in another area in church, at work, or at a friend’s special party ~ and illness changed things on a dime.
So yes being yes and no being no is not about whether or not your answer will ever have to change. It’s about not adding to it by swearing by any other power outside of your answer.
Was your initial “yes” not true? Certainly not! Circumstances simply changed.
So let’s look at another part of the struggle in our need to sometimes say No. This part of it is the part that I am dealing with currently, and it is WAY harder for me than the kind of things I listed above.
It’s about the perspective thingie.
For me, the struggle is not about whether I stand firm in regard to my word, barring circumstances that I cannot help. Instead, it’s about how there is always a “yes” to be found in our need to say “no”…..IF we are now having to say “no” after prayer and consideration from a Godly perspective.
It’s about how hard it is sometimes to see the Yes in the No and know that God’s got plans. Plans to work all things together for our good. Plans to show His mighty strength through our weakness.
Plans to prosper us and not harm us.
HE knows what the Yes is in the No.
For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. Jeremiah 29:11
Let me tell you, friends. I cannot COUNT how many “No’s” I have had to dole out lately.
Here are just a few:
- I have to say “No” about serving or attending church on Wednesday nights right now – it’s the middle of my work week and I have to use Wednesday as a day of rest, a day of not going out in the evening. Period. And I hate it.
- I have to say “No” about doing more than one or two errands at a time ~ even when it’s something that might mean a lot to my kids if I could say “Yes.” Hate that too.
- I have to say “No” to doing the big grocery shopping trip every week ~ this means my husband gets to do this chore after working way more hours than I do during the week, along with the many other things he has to take care of on the weekends. Really hate this one!
- I had to say “No” to several things at work that would not only benefit me career-wise, but really benefit the company for which I work if I could pull it off right now. Hate, hate, hate it!
- AND…..at work: I can’t have a “normal” workspace….I can’t wear normal headphones like everyone else around me. I can’t sit just anywhere. I can’t volunteer to do extra things that would benefit many people, even though I am skilled to do the tasks. My boss has to build me a special cubicle just so I can cope with the sensory stimuli issues this Fibro is causing me and the pain that ensues as a result.
No. Can’t. Sorry. Unable to at this time.
Did I say I hate it yet?
BUT….God is working on me, friends. He is helping me to see the “Yes” in all of these “No’s”.
I don’t know about you, but right now in my life, it doesn’t bother me to miss out on opportunities as far as work is concerned. I don’t care about moving up the ladder, getting a new and more challenging job, or making more money. So I don’t have to contend with that whole set of angst that comes along with that.
But I hate to disappoint others. I hate to say “Yes” and then have to change it to “No” if circumstances with my health change. I dislike immensely having to inconvenience others and make them do more work to make things work out better for my health.
I forget about Jesus and how He allowed the other man to help Him carry the cross.
I forget what I know about all the Yes’s I find in Him. And they are often found in saying No here on earth.
So I have to LOOK ~ I have to SEARCH ~
I have to look hard for the Yes in the No.
- I am saying Yes to God and the prodding inside to take care of my health right now, even if it means that others may be disappointed (although they are understanding at the same time).
- I am saying Yes to being open to going down whatever path God leads me by not walking through doors that swing wide open just because….they are open.
- I am saying Yes by saying No to all that glitters in front of me and around me, and embracing the glitter that’s in the mud right where I am at for this moment.
- I am saying Yes to allow others to help me bear my own burdens.
- I am saying Yes by saying No ~ Yes to whatever the Lord has in store ~ for all of us.
I will rise up out of the mud some day and the Lord will choose to open a different door. We don’t have to go through every door that is already open, dear friends. Maybe someone else needs to walk through one of those doors.
Just cause it’s open doesn’t mean it’s mine to walk through.
How about you? Do you find it hard to have to say No to things that seem like they would be great for you or for others IF the circumstances were different? Is it hard for you to have to do it, even though you know it’s the right choice? Can you see the Yes in your No today, and if not ~ have you asked God to help you see it? And have you cried out and asked for Him to comfort you in the part of it that feels like you are missing something, or letting others down?
I can practically guarantee it when I say that it’s not all about the person saying No. I can assure you that others involved have their own process to go through in relation to how your decisions impact their own. Maybe God is working in their life through you or in a way that they don’t know about yet.
We have a responsiblity as Christians to move out of the way and let God be God, right?
Newsflash for Annie: My “NO” may be a big “YES” for someone else.
Oh yah ~ it’s that thing again ~ It’s not all about ME.
I don’t know about you, but here is what I have started to see. I can have the fullest of confidence that God is working in each of our lives if we are seeking Him. I can rest and find peace in my No, even when it makes me uncomfortable. And I have the hope and the assurance that my No will do good somewhere ~ because God’s got this, friends!
I pray that you will know this too.
That you will know that your No is meaningful. That your No will help you to know God better and say Yes to Him more of the time.
That you will know that in your No, God’s got you. Yes…He does!
That your No means Yes, Yes! ~ When you turn it all over to Him.
Yes. God’s got you.
Yes, He knows.
Yes. He plans to prosper you.
See the Yes found in Jesus, even through all the No, No, No’s.
That’s the only real Yes that we need! And there’s NO doubt about it!
“For with God nothing will be impossible.” Luke 1:37
“This is the confidence we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to his will, he hears us.” 1 John 5:14