Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Holiness & Sincerity

Do you struggle with telling people what they want to hear? Or committing to things because you don't want to let anyone down, not because you feel called to do it?  These are both things I have always struggled with.  I heard something at Titus2 a while ago that I have not been able to let go of, thankfully. 

"Let your yes be your yes, and your no be your no."

That's sound so simple doesn't it? In this case she was talking about the lack of RSVP's in our culture {a whole post all on it's own!} and the fact that people are always waiting to see if something better comes along before they commit to anything.  The more I have thought about this though I realize it relates to many areas.

Or do I make my plans in a worldly manner so that in the same breath I say, "Yes, yes" and "No, no"? 
2 Corinthians 1:17

In Paul's second letter to the Corinthians he is explaining the serious thought that went into his decision on whether or not to visit their church again. His decision was not made lightly. This has me thinking about how thoughtfully my decisions are made and why I make them.
My past and current struggles with this really boil down to avoiding conflict.  I'm not sure people are always willing to hear the truth and so maybe I sugarcoat things a bit.  Although things should always be said in love, they should also be truthful.  What God has shown me is that I am to be pleasing to Him.  So what should be my goal in my relationships here?

Now this is our boast: Our conscience testifies that we have conducted ourselves in the world, and especially in out relations with you, in the holiness and sincerity that are from God. We have done so not according to worldly wisdom but according to God's grace.
2 Corinthians 1:12

How great is it that God gives us His word to guide us through all aspects of our lives? Especially the tricky parts! How often have I agreed to do something because I didn't want to disappoint someone and then complained about it to my husband? How many times in the past have I danced around a situation because it was uncomfortable instead of just speaking honestly with love? Too many.  In pleasing God those around me should be able to trust that my yes is my yes and my no is my no.  My decisions about how to spend my time or who to spend my time with need to be made only after much prayer.  When I make these decision purely in my own flesh it tends not to go well {can I get an amen?}.
My priority is to serve God, my hubby and my children and to let the Lord guide me to what else He might have for me. Not to force myself in and out of situations based on my own whims. My priority is to be holy and sincere in all my dealings here on earth because that is what I am called to do, and anything less cheapens the sacrifice made for me..

And we, who with unveiled faces all reflect the Lord's glory, are being transformed into his likeness with ever-increasing glory, which comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit.
2 Corinthians 3:18

I'd love to hear a good discussion on this so we can spur each other on...ready...go!

And since I have an OCD thing about posting with no pictures, here's one for you.



virginiamae said...

I struggle with being a people pleaser myself. & how sad it is. God just wants us to live for Him, and that's not much to ask after all of His Grace =) He gives me so many daily reminders, I just can be blinded by the worldly stuff and don't see them. So sad. Thanks for the reminder =)

Kelly said...

AMEN!!! Titus 2 is one of my favorites! My grandpa always told me growing up that i was only as good as my word, so with that i try to mean what i say & say what i mean. this is difficult for me because I AM a pleaser. but after all the drama that went on between me and my hubz 5 years ago i finally realized life is to short and i learned to say no when necessary. when i say yes to something i want to be there whole heartedly. my point is YES! WE MUST MAKE ALL DECISIONS after prayerful consideration! LOVE YOU FRIEND! you ROCK!

stefbarcus said...

Love this post. I am a huge people pleaser with huge boundary issues. Problem!!! I also don't know how to ask for help... my "I can do it ALL" perfectionistic attitude gets in the way of my friendships... which leads to a big pile of loneliness. * Lord, let me seek you..make me the lady of God you have always wanted for me! *

theolivetree said...

Oh I sooo needed this! I have such a hard time saying NO...I become overwhelmed with guilt! Great post today ;0 )

Meredith said...

Oh gosh...my problem is I want to say Yes to too many things b/c so many things appeal to me. Plus when we serve it's easier to encourage others to join along with us and encourage others to step up as well....but alas there are only so many hours in a day....and priorities a must....so balancing this one is a tricky one for me too....and I don't see it getting easier any time soon! Sometimes it's O.K. to say No and sometimes God tells us No. Perhaps the timing isn't right or it's not the direction He wants to take us in. So sometimes it's a No, not right now, not during this season...and sometimes it's just a No, that's not the wisest choice for me. Then it's time to lay it down and move forward. (At least I think that's how it goes)

rachel porter said...

oh man. hard one. i would say and admit all too often it's WAY MORE about me than it should be. so with rsvp'ing or even going to a party...it shouldn't be about me or who i'll see or if i'll be comfortable. etc. it should be about the people the party is for. ahhh. i am so selfish.i need Jesus and the gospel. the end.

Laura@Faith Hope Love said...

Oh goodness. I struggle with being way too concerned about what other people think, therefore, I'm afraid to say "no" because I don't want to upset them. Then I over obligate myself and regret making commitments that I really don't want to keep. So I've recently come to a conclusion...no more doing things for other people just to make them happy, no more putting myself or my family out just to avoid conflict...no more making decisions based off of guilt! ---it's very freeing! ;)

SavedthruLove said...

One of my biggest faults of the many that I have accumulated in this sinful world is PLEASING OTHERS. I have the fear of wanting to make sure others are pleased by me and if I even for a second think they are not I completely become consumed by how I think they feel towards me. It truly hurts. I really see God working this out in me since He revealed it not too long ago but I definitely struggle with it.

Since first hearing that verse and reading about as Christians we are called to stick to our word. IT ties in with not needing to SWEAR to GOD or PROMISE after we commit to whatever we have said. But I think it goes both ways too.

Like if you commit to something only to realize you can no longer make it, then you should let them know that your no longer able to so that they aren't out of the loop and you don't go against your word. I think it just boils down to being honest and spirit lead.

We cannot realistically always please one another. We are too sinful to be capable of that. But we can strive to keep it real just as our savior did on earth and seek to be pleasing HIM in all that we do.

I think I made sense and responded?? I'm not sure. hahaha

love your blog! be blessed dear :)!!



Jessica said...

I heard a Christian woman give this advice: if you're invited to do something that you don't want to commit to, simply say, "that would not be best for our family."

That short little response has been helpful to me!

Rahel Redwine said...

Wow, thanks for the encouragement! I believe it's so important to say yes or no! I was convicted about this a while back. It really is hard to give definite answers, but now that I'm learning more and more to do so, it's hard for me not to get upset when people say they'll be somewhere and don't show up. We can always use the reminder and hopefully we can say "yes" to committing to things!

Kimberlee Haag said...

Love this post! It is a constant struggle for me... If our relationships and schedules conflict our time with Him and what He requires of us, it is no longer pleasing or gratifying to our Father... Even our commitments at church (I am having to learn)! May my time, talents, and treasures be used to GLORIFY Him!

Casey Martinez said...

This exact verse was what the Lord gave me about 4 years ago and then began instructing me how to commit only if I really wanted to and to learn to communicate what I really mean so people aren't confused as I got myself in so many awkward situations because I didn't know how to say what I really wanted to. It is so liberating!!! Still a work in progress for sure but, feels so good and it seems to actually minimize social issues because then everyone is clear on things. Good Good post! I know everyone can relate to this!

Lissa said...

Thanks, Jami! I needed this post!! I have been the ultimate "conflict avoider". I am working on getting better with God's help. :o)

Nessa said...

This is a great post. I have a hard time with all these things. I say yes to things because I feel like I should - then the event gets here and I get selfish with my time. I rarely ever cancel on someone... but I do get resentful. I needed to read this today. Thanks Jami.

Megan said...

wow. wonderful post.
too often I struggle with "sugarcoating" things as well, but I need to not be afraid to let my yes be yes and my no be no.
this was a great reminder! thank you.