But What If I Say No and They Stop Liking Me? / Ch. 13 – Pages 154to 167
Today’s post comes to us from the host of The Intentional Filling, Bree Blum.
Call me a wallflower, shy or introverted and I won’t disagree. I’ve never been one for socialization and I stuck close to my mother’s side as a child. Over the years, I’ve learned that though I need time alone in order to “recharge”, I desperately crave a sense of community; a belonging.
My teen years followed up that desire with a chain of unfortunate friendships and romantic relationships, each of which that I tirelessly gave of myself, striving to make others like me, no matter the cost.
It wasn’t until I had been burned through one too many ill-suited relationships that I realized that I was working too hard at making things “work” and that I was living for all the wrong reasons.
In that particular relationship, I had stripped away most of what makes up Bree in order to make way for what I thought was what he desired. I had changed (or rather bottled up) my views and my moral grounding. My attitude, way of dress, language and overall demeanor was so foreign to the life I had lived up until that point. I was desperate for love so I willingly gave up myself for someone who wasn’t worth a second glance.
In Genesis 1:27 God says,
So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them.
God created each of us, in His image. He created us for community and to extend His love. He also gave us each of us the possession of unique gifts; given to be used on this earth to bring glory to His name.
My pastor recently preached about the importance of using these gifts, but not to a detriment of ourselves. To paraphrase, we cannot use these gifts as a way to work our way into the good graces of others and we certainly cannot use these gifts to work our way into heaven.
“Those who constantly try to impress others will quickly depress themselves.” – Lysa TerKeurst
We are called by God for many different missions during our time here. We are each called in many different ways, none right or wrong, but the calling is a gift itself from God; called to be used as an instrument for God, as He sees fit.
So saying yes to others, in aiding them during a time of need, in seeing to responsibilities that our gifts and talents are suited for, and saying yes to what is beneficial for mental, physical and spiritual well being are all very important. However, we also need to remember that the priority needs to be considered in our decision making and how we interact with others, weighing each option against whether it is pleasing to God rather than to fellow man. And as a result, not every yes needs to be uttered by our lips.
If I am the person constantly saying yes, I might be hindering others from trusting God. – The Best Yes, Pg. 148
How’s that for a shocking realization? By always stepping forward to take on another task, in saying yes to another decision, we may very well be trying to fill the shoes of a very big God.
Instead of always running to everyone’s aid, we must consider God’s desires for how we place ourselves in each situation; by prayer or simply stepping aside for someone better suited might be the best option to allow others to reach out and grasp the hand of God.
Take all this and ponder it, friend. Determine to use it to move some of your relationships forward or put the brakes on others. But in the midst of it all, challenge yourself to be honest about what’s really going on with all those requests and invitations and opportunities.
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