People are obsessed with telling one another to say no. If I had a buck for every blog that’s been written trying to encourage you to say no, I could fuel my Starbucks habit for life.
Maybe we all need some courage; someone to tell us to stop making decisions out of guilt, to be intentional about how we spend our time. But, wow. Seriously, so much encouragement to say no is a little sad to me. Call me an optimist, but I wonder if anyone out there needs a little courage to say YES this week.
There’s something about being so concerned about our “no” that puts us on the defensive. We become guarded, hoarding our time and talents. Don’t ask me to do anything more! Don’t ask me to do anything I don’t want to do! Don’t ask me to inconvenience my time, my family, my current to-do list, my plans for the weekend, my devotional time, my me-time, my husband-time, my workout time, or anything else in my carefully crafted life!
Don’t get me wrong, I could certainly use some practice on my no. But I wonder if so much focus on defense makes me forget to play offense.
What would happen if I decided to say yes this week? Yes to the kids, yes to the opportunities that aren’t just about my agenda. What would happen if I decided to get really crazy and trump the offers I receive with an extravagant yes? When the kids ask for waffles, I make bacon too. When the boys want to play catch, I tell them I’m up for a whole game. When I need to attend a meeting, I bring treats. When I want to write a thank-you email, I send a note instead.
I will have less time and I will be inconvenienced. But somehow I know that I will also feel more extravagant: lavish and excessive with my love. And since I want to be a person known for love, I wonder if I might actually feel more in control of my life. I will be shaping my world into the person I want to be, rather than the person I want to protect.
I’ll practice my no next week. But this week, I’m saying YES.
Excuse me, the sleepover party behind me asked for pancakes, but I’m trumping that yes with extravagant love in the form of pancakes, eggs, bacon and toast.