Yes, No, Maybe So

The last place I expected to learn a spiritual truth about myself was in a book about criminal behavior. But truth is truth whether it’s in a church, a university, or a library. And this one hit me hard.

Reading through a chapter on predatory behavior, I came across this sentence. “No, is a word that must never be negotiated, because the person who chooses not to hear it is trying to control you.”

Now—everything we could say about children’s manipulative ways aside—I immediately heard, “But let your statement be, ‘Yes, yes’ or ‘No, no’; anything beyond these is of evil.”

It got me to thinking—how many times do I not hear someone’s ‘no.' Click To Tweet

Obviously not in a criminal way (at least you hope not) but in a “helpful” way?

“Do you need a hand with that? No? Are you sure?”

“Do you want a piece of cake? No? It’s good…”

Is it really a big deal?

Is it wrong to manipulate a situation when you see you can bring about good by doing so?  What’s wrong with taking a bit of control instead of respecting the answer given? What would happen if we respected each other’s yes as yes and no as no?

It would leave us firmly in control of our own actions. If we want something, but are too proud/embarrassed/insecure to answer yes, then we will experience the consequence of not being truthful.

We are suddenly presented with an opportunity to grow. To humble ourselves. Click To Tweet

What would it look like if we always said yes when we meant yes and no when we meant no? Would we think more often before we answer, knowing we’ll be taken at face value?

Would we be more trusted?

What would it look like if we refuse to second-guess another person’s answer and allow them the responsibility of their own answers? Would we foster growth? Click To Tweet

I don’t know but I’m willing to relinquish my control to find out.

Action step: Read Matthew 5:37









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