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The Power of One No

By Belinda

"You seem to do a really good job of building things that you are learning, into your life," said Susan.

"Doesn't everybody?" I said.

"Nope!" was her emphatic reply, and she went on to use herself as an unflattering example of not doing so.

Of course that conversation kind of went on in reverse last night after cell group, when we stood at the door saying goodnight.

We were talking about how much better we can work through things through now than we used to be able to.

"You sure have changed," she said.

"I've changed? And you haven't had to change at all?" I said.

"Nope! Not at all." she said. And we hugged and said goodbye, laughing at one another.

I've been thinking about Susan's first (nice) comment this week, though. It was encouraging, because so often it feels as though a lifetime can be spent fighting the same battles; going around the same mountains; whether they be addictive behaviours; overworking; procrastination; overspending; lack of exercise; lack of adequate rest; anger; living without sabbath--and those are just yours! Just joking, of course! :)

This line of thinking reminded me of something that Gary Thomas, one of the speakers at the Focus on Marriage seminar that I attended last week, said. It hit me with its encouragement and truth as I reread the notes I made:

Perseverence and persistence are biblical principals. We can grow out of an addiction by saying no to it many times.

I immediately saw the relevance to areas that we all battle.

I've been thinking a lot about that phrase: "We can grow out of an addiction by saying no to it many times."

Isn't that how we build things into our lives that we want to? Small step by small step? I get excited at the hope and truth in that principle. The big fresh start when everything will change--New Year's Day--is encouraging for some of us! Nothing wrong with a fresh start, I love them myself. I also want to faithfully persevere with small steps in the right direction, fully absorbing the principle that saying no to something I don't need, even once, is a step in forming a new and healthier pattern in my life. I can do small steps.

I hope this thought encourages you too--if you have as many problems as me, that is. :)

Perseverance and persistance are old fashioned virtues, a little out of sync with this fast paced, instant-gratification-oriented world, but I want to make their acquaintance--get to know them better.

Happy Saturday!


Julie said…

Reach to the One who can, take comfort in the One who is. I can all things through Christ who strengthens me.

Susan said…
I'm just wondering... How many comments did I make to you this week before I finally got to that (first) nice one???
Belinda said…
Ha ha! Stop it Susan. :)
Emily said…
So I just need to say "no" to overcome these obsticles? What is this word with an n and an o? How do I pronounce it? If only I could grasp this concept....Sigh.
One of the lesser known songs by Madonna (yes I'm quoting Madonna) is 'the power of goodbye' which talks about us having the ultimate power of 'goodbye' over aspects of our lives and ourselves that we do not want any longer. I loved that idea there too.
Belinda said…
Emily, you made me laugh. Sometimes I wonder the same thing!

And Dave: Cool additional thought. I love it too. :)

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