One of the most powerful words in the English language has just two letters in it.
It begins with the letter “N” and ends with the letter “O”.
As Christians we can be under so much pressure to say yes to everything, and church leaders can be notorious for forgetting that the people who are giving of their time to serve in churches, how ever important that particular ministry may appear, also have lives to live and church is just one small piece of that.
Being part of a church family is really important. The bible goes to great lengths to remind us of the importance of exactly this! But our primary ministry is always to our family, especially if we are married or have children.
Clive Calver, who once led the Evangelical Alliance in the UK had to learn to say the word ‘No’. It reached a point where he realised he could have been in perhaps 3 or 4 meetings every night, or more, ever single day of the week. He didn’t like to say no. But, when he realised he had more meetings than evenings that he was needed at, saying no became something he was able to start saying. With maturity there is a certain degree of wisdom. With wisdom you realise that saying no can be the best thing you can ever do! And I use the word do, because we love to be busy doing stuff. When, in our relationship with God, it is no less important to do nothing in order to simply be with God. And that requires us saying no to something!
Within the context of a church family saying yes means we can give of our time. But, saying no, means we’re letting somebody else give of their time to God instead. If we’re not careful our ability to say yes can overwhelm other voices who may be less comfortable saying yes out loud.
All things have a beginning and an end. Which means that all things have a middle too! At some point we have to realise we can’t do everything because there is more to do than we can humanly do, and if we can’t do everything, and can only do some things, it is logical to conclude that we should be more than willing to say no in order to selectively do what God is asking of us. And it also means, interestingly, that we need to be encouraging people to say no, as much as we may currently urge them to say yes!
So give yourself a break, and be happy saying no to people, because God wants our hearts far more than our hands.
Just a thought…
0:06 So another Andy B 2 Minute Video.
0:09 Now, in in a few days time we've got the Queen's platinum celebrations. It's how long she's been a queen in the UK, and the Commonwealth. So, in England, here, we've got two extra days off, which is fab. So Thursday, Friday Jo's off work, which gives us a four day weekend. We like four day weekends. They're not very common! So we quite like having a four day weekend.
0:30 So, we've really worked really hard recently. We've filmed ahead of time, so that we can have Saturday off from filming. Saturday's usually a full day of filming for us, because we produce all of our video material.
0:42 Now I was thinking about the Stop and Start mentality of life. The queen is currently Queen. That's why she's called the Queen, funnily enough, but at some point she will stop being the queen. At some point she started being the queen. She took over from the Queen Mother, who who gave over the throne, throne, to the Queen. At some point the Queen will give over to somebody else, probably Prince Charles. Or maybe she'll sadly die, and have to have that throne passed on. But there's a stop and start. Everything begins. Everything ends.
1:11 As we look around the world we see God created the heavens and the earth. Within that six day period He started the world. He started the hydrological cycle, which I always talk about, 'cos it's amazing. He started the planets spinning, and rotating. He started all this. There was a beginning. And we know from Revelation, there will be an end. It isn't just an endless cycle. There is a beginning, and there is an end. And in life, there are beginnings and ends too.
1:40 Perhaps you starting a new church. It's a start. It's something new. Maybe because you've moved. Maybe it's time to move on. Maybe you just don't like where you're at, it's not meeting your needs anymore. And you need to go somewhere where, actually, you can have those needs met and you can actually serve God. It's important! So, something starts, but when something starts there's so often an end.
1:40 With the BerryBunch, we've come to the end of quite a few seasons. Not planned to be at the same time but a number of our seasons of episodes have all suddenly stopped at the same time. Endurance has come to an end now. Family Prayer Time has come to an end now. And they'll come back in the future. We'll take about a month or so to to refresh all that stuff. But things have come to an end. But the things about that comes to an end is when something stops, something can start.
2:28 We only have so much capacity in life. We can't do everything. Therefore, to do new things, we actually did need to stop things. And one of the best things we can do as a Christian, ever, is to learn to say no. No isn't a bad word. No is a good word! Because what no does, what saying no to somebody does, is it gives us the opportunity to say yes to something that God wants us to do.
2:51 People will grab your time. If you're busy, I'm sure you know it's true, if you're busy, people will ask you to do stuff because they see you're busy, yhey see you can get stuff done. But actually, as Christians, it's important to do things. It's equally important to stop doing things. And one of the, one of my biggest passions, is to say to people to learn to say no. Because a Minister took his time to say, get to me, to learn to say the word no. So that the next person that asks you a question, Andy, just say no. I don't care if you want to do it or no, you're doing far too much in this church, say no!
3:21 And I did and it was liberating. And it was wonderful to say to somebody No, I'm not gonna do that. I've got other things to do. I was a worship leader. I was doing the PA. I was leading services. I was involved in the children's ministry and I was young I could do those things. And this is the point he made. You can do those now but you won't always be having the energy or the time.
3:40 Learn to say no. And when we say no, it means we can say yes to new things, and new beginnings, and new possibilities, new options. So learn to say no, it's a good thing.
3:51 Just a thought.
Written by The BerryBunch