We live in a culture that is very protective of their yeses. There is an encouragement to say no to obligations and commitments so that we can better serve those that we already have. We are taught that our “yes” is much more powerful when preceded by a handful of “nos.” It is embedded throughout our whole culture, but especially in Christian circles. There is a lot of wisdom in these premises, and our family has even applied them to our own life in recent months. However, I fear that far too often we take the same approach with the things that God calls us to do. We think that we get to pick and choose when we tell God yes, and that is something is too big, too much of a commitment, or too risky we can tell Him no.
A year ago, God asked something of our family. We were still living through the aftermath of our previous yes that took our family to Guatemala and back all within a year. (If you are new to our story you can read more about this in the post When Following God Doesn’t Turn Out the Way You Planned). Every day we were reminded of the cost of saying yes to being missionaries. We were still seeking a medical diagnosis for our youngest, and Brad was traveling back and forth to Guatemala to sell our things. Our oldest was still crying daily to go back to his “Guatemala house,” and we constantly were met with confused looks around town with people inquiring why we weren’t in Guatemala. However, in all of that, God still asked us to take another leap of faith.
He was asking us to start a ministry to serve foster and adoptive families in our Kentucky town. It was another huge step. A step that would likely turn out to be more public and require even more promotion than our ministry in Guatemala ever did. Our weary hearts wanted so desperately to say no, or not this year. However, we knew that there is no better place to walk than in the center of God’s calling. So, we read some books, sought out the wisdom of others, and we went for it.
Not a day has passed since we said yes that we haven’t been so grateful that we did. In under a year, Be the Village has grown from a small ministry into a non-profit that serves multiple churches. We have already served dozens of families in various ways, packed hundreds of duffel bags for children entering foster care, and been asked to speak and help in so many ways. Simply put, we can’t keep up with the ministry opportunity and need for Be the Village. I am blown away at how God has moved, and how He has used us. All because we said yes.
I often sit back and think, “We could have missed this.” Our life would look very different and be a whole lot more empty without the blessings that have come through Be the Village. God rarely asks us to do things for Him at convenient times, or when we feel ready. We often just have to say yes out of obedience and wait on Him to take care of the rest. I truly believe that all of us are just one yes away from being used in incredible ways by a powerful God.
Don’t mishear me though. I’m not saying that it will be easy, or even without pain. Our story is not an easy one. There are still days where my three-year-old climbs in my lap and cries for Guatemala, and I have moments where I question everything. God does not promise that our obedience to Him will lead to success or ease. However, He will always always be faithful.
Is God asking you to do something that you are unsure about? I challenge you to say yes, friend. There is no need to protect your yes from an all-knowing Creator. He is the only one who can take your yes and make it into something of value for all eternity.
Saying yes is hard sometimes. Especially when the plan seems crazy and out of your character. So many times I’ve said yes thinking I was CRAZY. But I’m glad I did and God has always proven faithful. I’m in the middle of a “yes” and I don’t know where finances are coming from or how to make this work. But I know God is already there waiting on me. Ready to show me.
We have been there many times by saying “yes” even though we don’t know where the finances are going to come from. We try to hard to have a vision driven mindset for ministry instead of a budget driven mindset. We find that God always always provides in these situations.
Gwen Thielges says
Love this! You said this very well and I especially loved: “God does not promise that our obedience to Him will lead to success or ease. However, He will always always be faithful.” Thank you for sharing your story and God’s faithfulness.
Yes, that truth is so key. If we say yes expecting a life of bliss we will be sorely disappointed. Thanks for reading and commenting.
So true. The God doesn’t call us to easy roads. But when we follow Him, we get a front row seat to watch Him work.
So true. I’m so glad to have a front row seat. Thanks for commenting, Stephanie.
Paula Frances Price says
I love the analogy of not protecting our yeses! Thank you for your story!
Thank you for reading! He truly is the best one to trust with our yeses.
There is nuance to so much in life – and I am loving that you delve into the answer “yes.” It definitely depends who (or Who) is doing the asking. This will stick with me!! Thank you!
So very true. God is the only one who we answer to with our yeses and nos. Thanks for commenting!
Ashley Rowland | HISsparrowBlog says
I love this. It’s a great reminder. And ‘coincidentally’ my husband and I were talking about adoption just last night. 🙂