We have 86,400 secs every day to make an impact on our world and in the lives of the people around us. While a second or a minute may seem like a short amount of time, it is not. Life happens in short time bursts. All things – whether good or bad – happens to us in moments. Similarly, life can change in just an instant. Most times, we do not realize or take advantage of the precious moments we have because we are too busy doing things and running around. A life lived this way can be very frustrating and unfulfilling for it is life that is lived by default and not a life that is lived by design.
This means that we have to get rid of the distractions that so easily plague us. It means that we have to stop running around doing what everybody else wants us to do in favor of what we have been called to do. In life, I have realized that while everything can be elevated as being urgent, not all things can be elevated as being important. You will simply have to learn to say no if you are to do what matters most and get the most out of your life.
People are good at elevating the importance of what they want you to accomplish for them. Most people will want you to drop everything you are doing to focus on their issue. Do not be surprised if they try to manipulate you with emotions to get their way. They may get angry or teary-eyed; they may give you the silent treatment or call you incessantly. Worse still, Do not be surprised if all of a sudden, the person who you is never sure God is speaking to them tells you that God spoke to them plain as day concerning your life. Do not yield when the person starts to quote scripture to try to guilt-trip you into doing their bidding!
When this happens, ask yourself two key questions: Is what I am about to do moving me towards my purpose. Is this the will of God for my life right now? Is this a godly distraction or is it an ungodly distraction?
If you do not ponder your ways, you will find that you spend most of your time being other people’s door mat and being a slave to other people’s wishes. This is not only bad, it is idolatrous in that you have put other people’s wishes above God’s wish for you! You are more focused in pleasing man than you are pleasing God!
If you cannot say no, is it because you are afraid of something? If you can’t say no, is it because you have made something an idol in your life above God? Is it because you have misplaced your trust?
Our trust should be in God and no one else! We will learn to say no to the things that is not in God’s plan for our lives – even though those things may be noble.
Example of Jesus: Even Jesus had to say no! When he was told that Lazarus was sick and dying, he followed the will of God and decided to stay an extra 2 days where he was before departing. While he could have taken off immediately and spared many people the agony of mourning Lazarus’ death, Jesus understood that God had better plans through the death of Lazarus. As we know, Jesus raised Lazarus from the grave and people got to see God’s mighty power. If Jesus had not obeyed, it would have robbed the people of seeing the truth that Jesus had power over death. It would have robbed the people of believing! See, Lazarus would have recovered one way or the other since it was the will of God. What was more important was that the people believed.
Are you depriving the people in your life the miracle that God wants to do for them because you are rushing to the rescue all the time? Have you started playing God instead of allowing God to be God because of your inability to say no?
Food for thought: Just because you are doing what seems right, and is right in peoples eyes, does not mean you are being obedient or doing what is right in the sight of God.