I started to entitle this blog, “No and other difficult words.” I elected instead to settle on the singular monumental challenging word and that is, “No,” for when you possess the courage to utter it, expect it to be received in an unrecognizable manner. For while people may appear to agree with the delivery of your “no,” please note that unconsciously they are questioning the validity of it. Wait, allow me to back up, unconsciously, you may even be questioning the validity of it. Why is it so foreign? Is it because it takes a lot for you to speak it? Do you suppose that in doing so you are telling no to God to a purpose He has for you or for His kingdom? It may not always be that deep or spiritual. A “no” is sometimes necessary in order to fulfill what He has planned for your life. We operate in seasons, and it is critical to comprehend the difference between what we should be saying yes to and what we should say no to. Matthew 5:37 reads, “Let what you say be simply ‘Yes’ or ‘No’; anything more than this comes from evil.” This means that say either yes, you will do something, or no I won’t. Adding more opens ourself up to that which is not of God.
So, one of my intentions for 2019 was to actualize the utility of the word “no” more often. I’ve been stretching myself too thin. I’m getting older and I have to recognize the toll of doing #teamtoomuch will have on my life. Also, perhaps most importantly is knowing when you have said enough “yeses” and fulfilled the purpose and season that God ordained. For a long time in my career I held positions for about 3-4 years and then I moved on. Someone reading my resume might assume that I was fickle, but it simply reflects my election to transition when I’d fulfilled my purpose. How did I know? Well, a good indicator was when the discomfort was larger than the drive. This is a difficult consideration for believers because we stand upon a Philippians 4:13 anointing, without considering the earlier verses in the chapter that speak to being content in whatever state we find ourselves in. When this reality is under duress, it may be appropriate to interrogate the utility of a no.
As shared, a no may result in a yes for yourself. But don’t expect others to necessarily buy into your new reality. They may respond a bit aggressively, but don’t fret, they will get over it. Bless spaces and people as you depart them, but know that you are not required to stay where grace no longer remains. We may even find that the more that we say no to others, the greater the probability that we will be positioned to say yes to God. I’m further learning in this season to concentrate on my yes, and not the perceived yes of others. As frustrating as it may be, I am unable to control the actions of others, but I am able to control my response. God will deal with them accordingly, just as He does with me. When we work wholeheartedly He blesses us as such, and when we don’t, well, He has a way of taking care of that as well. Imagine what the world would be like if we were all saying “yes” to what God has called us to do! Marinate on that for a moment. I believe that many of the hopes and dreams and prayers that we desire would manifest because we are each operating in a resounding and appropriate yes in the earth realm!
Saying “no,” has its apprehensions for sure. And through said discomfort, it is critical for us to holdfast to what God is speaking and beckoning. II Corinthians 1:20-22 provides compelling evidence: “Whatever God has promised gets stamped with the Yes of Jesus. In Him, this is what we preach and pray, the great Amen, God’s Yes and our Yes together, gloriously evident. God affirms us, making us a sure thing in Christ, putting His Yes within us. By His Spirit He has stamped us with His eternal pledge—a sure beginning of what He is destined to complete.” Saying no may be unrecognizable to others, but it sounds like familiarity to God toward what He has purposed you to do in the earth.