I'm try to read through some encouraging books on how to focus on an artist life and they have been wonderful. Well I have reached a hiccup in one of them- a chapter on "just say no". I hate that phrase!
Yes, I understand the purpose of it and the need to rein in our commitments. Yes we do-do way to much things and some of the things we do are worthy of doing, just we aren't the ones that should be doing them.
This is my quandery- I think we have no problem saying "No" to things we all should be doing- There are a lot of us on this planet and there are a lot of hungry people not being fed, a lot of lonely people not being visited and comforted, a lot of fatherless children not being adopted.
Jesus told us that we do not know him, if we do not clothes the poor, feed the hungry, visit the prisoner, adopt the child- where does "just say no" fit in to that!
"Just saying No" or for that matter "Just saying Yes to everything" really has the same out come and is a victory for the enemy, because it leaves God's people in need either way- either the service or the server suffers and neither is in his purpose.
How about, "Just say Maybe!" how about being intuned to the urgings of the Holy Spirit- and waiting, oh there is that word so often in his commands- wait- not never, just not now! - The Pilgrims Progress is such a wonderful illustration of the Christian walk- but a large part of it is Christian had no idea what was going to come his way or what he should do when he got there- it seems if he had a "policy of always saying no" he might of missed out on a lot God intended for him. We also are pilgrims making our way to the Eternal City- we do not know all the stops in the road or the interesting strangers we will encounter- yes some will take our time, some will be fruitless pursuits, some will be out right dangerous, but some will be a blessing sent by our Creator- we lack the ability to distiunguise them- Only by the urging of the Holy Spirit will we know.
So instead of No or Yes all the Time, how about Maybe-and then feel down inside you and determine if Guilt or God is pushing you forward.