Balance in 2023 – Saying No

Just because you have the time doesn’t mean you have to say yes. Somewhere along the line women of our generation felt to be like Jesus we need to be constantly available. However, while on earth, Jesus took time to separate Himself from the crowd, so can we.

Look what Jesus told His disciples in Mark 6:31 “Then Jesus said, “Let’s go off by ourselves to a quiet place and rest awhile.” He said this because there were so many people coming and going that Jesus and his apostles didn’t have time to eat. Even for Jesus it got frenetic. After he said this, people followed Him, and He taught them. This is when He fed the 5000, later he went for a stroll on the water to take a break. Now that is dedication to rest. Like Jesus we may need to go to great lengths to insure we rest and re-create our souls.

It isn’t about not doing anything; it is about restoring ourselves so we can do what we are called to do. For the record, I am terrible at this. I don’t sit well. I reach for my phone, my hand hovering over it. It takes willpower not to snatch it up to see whatever made it chime.

Sometimes we say no because we need to rest. Other times it is because we aren’t supposed to say yes. Our time is not the deciding factor of our schedule. It takes wisdom and discernment to figure out when to say yes and when to decline.

Take a moment to look at the end of chapter 10 in the Gospel of Luke. We find the parable of the Good Samaritan, followed by Jesus’ visit with Mary and Martha. In the Good Samaritan we are shown the importance of doing things in difficult situations, and at Martha’s home we learn the importance of being still. Both are important, to create balance in our lives.

The Good Samaritan parable teaches us to take the Kingdom of God to others in peace. We lean into the power Jesus provides through the Holy Spirit to do difficult things. One of our roles is to rescue and extend care physically, financially, or spiritually. We bring justice and love to those that have been mistreated. We shine a light in dark places, and this brings joy to Jesus.

Other times we just need to be still and know He is God. To sit at His feet as Mary did and pray with joy and thanksgiving. It is here that we learn to commune with our God, developing a dialogue of prayer the allows us to know Him better. We gain wisdom, fill up with His power, and clean our heart. We need this time with Him.

Martha didn’t do anything wrong, she saw a task and moved to complete it. But she missed the greater One in her presence. I wonder what I would have done in her place. In this life we will have many opportunities to care for others, but we need to keep this in balance. How do you find balance between your doing and your being?

Coming soon: One on One coaching to help you determine your boundaries in ministry.

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