Sometimes I don’t remember to save my “Yes” for what is best. Oswald Chambers wrote that “the good is always the enemy of the best” and I believe that to be true. Zig Ziglar put it this way: “Say no to the good, so that you can say yes to the best!”
My fluctuation between listening to God and listening to myself is the problem. Understanding what opportunity the Father has brought my way is still a work in progress, but I’m learning to listen, and getting better at it. You probably are, too. But…
Last week I over-scheduled myself.
Too many meetings, too many yeses, and not enough time in between to process and express the stress. Wouldn’t you know it? James Clear wrote a post on how stress is cumulative. I read it at the end of my week and wholeheartedly agreed with him from where I lay on the kitchen floor. Then the upset stomach arrived. All that stress was going to be expressed in some way!
Working for myself, I am learning what I can and cannot do, how to schedule myself with what I can handle well, and listening to God for direction. And here’s the thing: I knew in my spirit last week what really wasn’t going to be OK for me, I felt that “still, small voice,” but did it anyway because someone nice asked me. They were good things, but not the best things, and could have been scheduled for another time. The short version is that I am learning to hear and obey the voice of God so that I’m not striving, anxious, weary, or overwhelmed.
I am learning to save my yes for what is best.
God promises precise direction (Isaiah 30:21). Walking with God for direction provides us with a divine exchange. I go where He leads and then process with Him about it. It’s really as simple as breathing. We breathe in the oxygen we need and express out the carbon dioxide. We go and do the things He leads us to do, then we receive from Him that refilling and renewal. He has built rest into every 24 hour day. It’s called night time. And He built rest into every week saying, “Take a day off with Me and leave your work week behind. Come enjoy Me, and all I have created for you.” (My paraphrase.)
And when the stress does build up, find a way to express it that doesn’t hurt you and someone else. I talk to God, or to a friend. I write it all down, the good, the bad, the ugly. If needed, I cry it out. I need to be rejuvenated. I get much refilling from sitting outside or going for a long walk. And there’s no substitute for reading the Bible, especially passages about God’s love for me. His Word is living and active, and can bless us individually with exactly what we need.
Find what works best for you, and practice good self-care over your spiritual, mental, and emotional life. This is what makes our small lives very effective for those around us. Those we interact with daily will receive from us, for better or for worse. We want them to feel loved, honored, and blessed, but we must have enough to share because it’s not just for us, it’s for them, too.
Inviting God to lead, protect, and support us makes a way to experience more of the Sozo Life that Jesus came to give us. The full life, not the over-scheduled one, but the fulfilling life we can enjoy, the one we can share with others because we will have enough left over. We can draw from courage to say no when we need to, and yes when it’s best. We can do this! We can be the blessing, the smile, the one who is more full of God-life because we keep returning to the source to exchange our stress for what He continually offers.
Whether you turn to the right or to the left, your ears will hear a voice behind you, saying, “This is the way; walk in it.” ~ Isaiah 30:21
Grace & Peace for the day,
(c) Sozo Life & Leadership, LLC, Oct. 29, 2014
From the desk by the window, just me and the dog.
Thanks, James Clear, for a timely post! Thanks to Lysa TerKeurst for writing about the concept of our best yes that first got me thinking! And thank God for the wisdom of Oswald Chambers and Zig Ziglar.