Sunday, August 1, 2010

Do You Really Mean Yes?

God convicted my husband and I today of something that is vital to our life as Christians.

Does our yes really mean YES
or are we putting parameters on it?

When Jesus was in the Garden of Gethsemane sweating blood over the cross, He asked His Father if there was any other way to accomplish His will.  Jesus didn't really WANT to say yes, but ultimately, Jesus said YES.  He said yes for YOU and ME.  Jesus wanted God's will to be done even if that meant He would hang on a cross to pay for OUR sin.  No matter what pain and suffering Jesus would go through, the will of His Father was more important to Him than His own personal comfort.

So the personal conviction comes in because of a conversation we were just having.  My husband and I were visiting about the number of children we might be able to "handle" (financially, physically, emotionally, spiritually).  We both agreed that at some point there would come a limit.  A point when we'd have to say no.

Then today, God reminded us that when He calls us to a life with Him, we don't get to be the boss anymore.  We don't get to set the parameters of what we will or will not do.  We don't get to say how many children we can "handle".  We don't get to determine when a "good" time would be to add another child to our family.  We don't even get to choose which child we might add.   When we say YES to Christ, our YES needs to be a wholehearted YES, not a half-hearted maybe.

When we live our life surrendered wholly to God, we must truly surrender ALL, trusting Him, the King of Kings, with every single detail of our lives.  When we hold back, we are disobedient to Him.  When we put parameters on our lives, we are telling God that we only trust Him a little bit. We trust Him with part of our lives, but if there's ever a part of our lives when we feel ourselves thinking that we just couldn't "handle" that situation, then that's the very part of our lives that we haven't yet wholly surrendered to God.  If we feel WE can't handle something, that's exactly where we've failed Him, because ON OUR OWN, WE  CAN'T handle it.  We are NOTHING without Him.  He never fails us or forsakes us, so if we truly trust Him, and He is calling us to say YES, then our yes needs to be a wholehearted yes, with full confidence that He will provide.  He doesn't ask us to say yes and then fail or forsake us.  His Word promises.  So, His plan and His promise is not to lead us down a path only to leave us hanging without provision.  His yes is a wholehearted YES as well.  One He will follow through on, no matter how impossible it looks or feels.  He is a God of miracles and mercy.  A God of unconditional love and provision.  With God, all things are possible.  (Matthew 19:26)

I ask you today to examine your life.  See if there are areas where you've set parameters upon what you will or will not allow God to do.    Ask Him to examine your heart and show you areas where you are lacking trust.  Ask Him to show you where your yes isn't really a yes.  Because our yes can't really mean YES if we put parameters on it. 

That's just a maybe. 

Or a sort-of. 

Or is it really a no?

We can't say, "OK, God, we can handle 8 kids.  We will say YES until we get to 8.  Then we're done."  That is really saying, "No, God, we're not going to trust you with our lives in regards to the number of children You plan to give us.  We want to stay in control.  We want to look at things logistically and financially and have control over that area of our lives.  Sure, we'd love to say yes, but it's just not that easy, God."

And God says something like this back to us, "You're right.  It's not that easy.  It's not easy for you because you're relying on your own strength and your own provision, and when you try to rely on self, nothing is easy.  With man, this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.  (Matthew 19:26)  My yoke is easy and my burden is light.  (Matthew 11:30)  Come, follow me..." (Mark 1:17)

The ... at the end of "Come, follow me..." is inserted in there by me so you can ask God to show you where He wants you to follow Him.  Ask God to help you say YES, wherever He is calling you.  He doesn't want a maybe.  He doesn't want a sort-of.  He doesn't want a no.  He wants a definite YES, without any parameters. 

Jesus modeled for us what it looks like to say yes.  Jesus was fully man when He had to say yes.  He even wrestled with saying yes to the cross.  Can you imagine what our lives would be like if Jesus had decided to put parameters on His yes?

Aren't you glad Jesus said YES?

Now, let us do the same as Jesus modeled and put God's will before our own.  Let's trust Him with every detail of our lives.  Let's not hold back on any area that we want to remain in control of.  The next time the Holy Spirit nudges you to say YES to Him and His will.  What will you say?

I hope you will do as Jesus did and say YES!  A wholehearted YES. 

For we would be nothing today if Jesus had said no.

The power of YES is great.  It makes an eternal difference when we say YES to His calling.  Trust Him.

"For no matter how many promises God has made, they are "Yes" in Christ. And so through him the "Amen" is spoken by us to the glory of God." 2 Corinthians 1:20

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