Thoughts from daily Bible reading for today- January 10, 2011
“But let your ‘Yes’ be ‘Yes,’ and your ‘No,’ ‘No.’ For whatever is more than these is from the evil one.” Matthew 5:37 (NKJV).
With whom do you need to communicate a firm answer of no? What opportunity is staring you in the face that you know in your heart you have to say no? Hesitation or delay only creates an expectation of commitment. It’s better to say no early on than to let silence send a message of yes. Learning to say no comes with mature faith in Christ.
God’s game plan requires us to go deeper with fewer people and fewer opportunities, so that we are able to give them the quality time and attention they desire and deserve. If we half-heartedly say yes, without the conviction of truly caring, then we dilute our effectiveness and the overall success of the project or the team. An active answer of no is better than a passive yes.
Children are a good example of regular opportunities to lovingly say no. A child does not have the context or experience to discern between what they want and what they need. For example, is it wise to give them a cell phone without it costing them anything? Probably not, even if in their words, “Everyone else has one”. Your no helps them to mature.
In the same way the Lord tells us no for our own good. Our heavenly Father is in a much better position to understand what’s best for us. You may not understand today why He shut a relational or career door, but in the days ahead it will become abundantly clear. Do not listen to Satan’s temptation to lead you to question where God has already said no to you.
“Now the serpent was more crafty than any of the wild animals the LORD God had made. He said to the woman, “Did God really say, ‘You must not eat from any tree in the garden’ (Genesis 3:1)?” The devil is a master at causing us to doubt that Jesus knows is best for us.
The better you are at trusting and obeying the Lord’s no’s, the better equipped you are to say no. It is a faith journey that never ends until we are promoted to our eternal home in heaven. When you say no to a nice attraction, you have the energy and emotional margin to say yes to God’s best. Say no now, by faith, and become free from the fear of rejection.
“Before I was afflicted I went astray, but now I obey your word” (Psalm 119:67).
Who needs to hear my loving no and what no do I need to accept from the Lord?
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