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Today I Said Yes

Today I said yes.

I answered the call (literally a phone call) to go to Costa Rica in just two weeks. 

One thing I love about my current season of life is the flexibility in my schedule to be able to say yes. When my sister calls asking, “Can you come hang with the baby for a few days?” I can say yes! When I get a call to preach at a retreat for the weekend, I can say yes! I am so grateful that opportunities like these come up, and even more grateful that I can answer the call. 

This call was a bit different though. It wasn’t for a three day weekend that’s a simple drive or short plane ride away. Instead, it was for an eight day international Discipleship trip with people I don’t know to a place I’ve never been with little idea of what’s actually going to happen when we get there. 

And I said yes!

A friend once described my life as a jet ski, where I can quickly change direction and dart around the obstacles that come up, whereas many people have lives like a cruise ship which takes a little more time to shift and can’t necessarily go anywhere without careful planning. There have been times that I’ve been more like a cruise ship; I just happen to currently be in a jet ski season. 

This means that the biggest obstacles I face when answering calls like this are not, “what about the work I’ll miss?” or “who will take care of the kids while I’m gone?” Instead, the questions that come up are less practical; my obstacles are more conceptual. “Is this the best fit for me right now?” 

Sometimes the practical questions are harder to answer. At other times the conceptual questions are harder to answer. Either way, saying “yes” to new opportunities can be challenging. And every time we say “yes” it’s an automatic “no” to something else. 

The most dangerous answer however is neither a yes nor a no, but a “not yer.” This answer is dangerous because it requires some follow up. Saying yes or no is easy because the decision is made! Even if there’s a lot of work to do after you decide, there’s a clear next step. But a “not yet” answer means you must continually think about when the answer will change to a “yes.” Steven Pressfield in his book The War of Art says it this way:

“We don’t tell ourselves ‘I’m never going to write my symphony.’ Instead we say, ‘I am going to write my symphony; I’m just going to start tomorrow.’”

Without intention, tomorrow never comes. 

It’s also dangerous because we can mistakenly use it to disguise our true answer, “no.” In this way, we deceive ourselves and others. We deny our limits as the gifts that they are instead of just embracing them and moving forward with a clear decision. The truth is, “no” is as acceptable an answer as “yes,” with or without explanation. It does not have to be bad. It can just be

One more thing – dangerous doesn’t mean unnecessary; sometimes the best answer we can give is “not yet.” Sometimes that really is the best answer, the right answer. But not when it’s a disguise for “no.”

Today I said yes. 

I answered a call to fly out of the country in just two weeks. I said yes. I’m ready. 

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