I’m drowning — again! Can someone throw me a line? Better yet, can someone take that line and sew my mouth shut? I mean to say “no”; I think to say “no”; I start to say “no” and “yes” comes out! I think I’ve been abducted by aliens!
Not really. I know the truth: I’m a wimp. For someone like me who loves to serve the Lord and hates to be left out of anything, saying “no” requires great strength. But I’ve got to learn. I’ve got to discipline myself to pray before I say either “yes” or “no.” I mean, I know that God has called me to work for Him, but I also know that I don’t corner the market on the gifts of teaching and service. I know that by saying “yes,” I am standing in the way of the person God is actually calling to do the job. I know that one of the greatest tools Satan uses against us is busyness and its resulting fatigue. I know but I just can’t “no”!
How do they do it? You know who I’m talking about. Those people who are asked again and again to help in the ministry of the Church, yet they repeatedly say “no” and simply pew-sit each Sunday. Checked off. Spiritual duty done. They don’t have a “no” problem. “No, I don’t want to come to discipleship class.” “No, I don’t have time to join a WMU group.” “No, I’m not called to help with extended session.” No this; no that; no, no, no. Don’t they know —
Oh, wait a minute… I’m beginning to get it. I know but have a “no” problem; they “no” but have a know problem. Hmmm…let me ruminate on this a minute.
I know what Paul teaches us about serving God:
- “…Always give yourselves fully to the work of the Lord, because you know that your labor in the Lord is not in vain” (1 Corinthians 15:58).
- “…you know that the Lord will reward everyone for whatever good he does…” (Ephesians 6:8).
- “Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for men, since you know that you will receive an inheritance from the Lord as a reward. It is the Lord Christ you are serving” (Colossians 3:23-24).
Read those verses carefully. Know your labor for the Lord is not in vain. Know the Lord will reward you for the good you do. Know that whatever you do you are actually working for the Lord, so you know you’ll receive an inheritance for your service. Wow! Wonderful truths to know and keep in your heart!
To “no” or not to “no” — that is my question. The answer? Well, I know I need to “no” more often but it’s hard to “no” when you know what I know? You know?