Mid-way through the conversation I recognized the game mother and daughter played at the next table over lunch. The “yes, but…” game. Daughter posed a problem. Mom offered possible solutions. Daughter responded to each idea, “Yes, but…”
Yes, but that would take more time than I have.
but … I tried that before and it turned out a mess.
but … I don’t have the financial resources to do that.
but … I could never get my friends to go along with me on that…
Then, I recognized Mom’s look. Deep sigh. Pursed lips. Furrowed brow. She removed her glasses, pinched the bridge of her nose and said, “I don’t know what else to tell you.”
“I know, there’s no good answer,” Daughter responded. I wonder if she realized the corners of her mouth turned up into a small smile. Did she really want an answer?
I recognized the “Yes, But” game because I played it, too. I found flaws in every suggestion. With others when I wanted to sidestep a problem. And with God to avoid moving forward. Like when He urged me to teach a Disciple Bible Study.
Yes, I could, but I haven’t studied enough yet.
but … I don’t have enough experience.
but … I can’t see me in front of a bunch of people.
but … I’m already overcommitted.
If I earnestly seek possibilities or weigh the pros and cons of a decision, “Yes, but” can have its place. Yes, but … how much caution is enough? How much do I trust God when He calls me into something. How much do I believe He will be the one to ensure success according to His plan?
Luke writes about a group of disciples who walked with Jesus along a dusty road toward Jerusalem. The Lord turned to one of the men and said, “Come, follow me.” The man replied, “Yes, but I must bury my father first.” Jesus called to another, “Come, follow me.” That man replied, “Sure, but first I have to say goodbye to my family.” Though Luke doesn’t tell us, I think Jesus never saw those men again. He knew their hearts and heard their “Yes, but…”
What does Christ expect of me? He expects I let nothing stand in my way to follow immediately like his twelve disciples when he called them. (Matthew 4:19-22) I glimpse God ask me, “Yes, but what are you waiting for?”
Jesus said, “No procrastination. No backward looks. You can’t put God’s kingdom off
till tomorrow. Seize the day. (Luke 9:62, The Message)
©2011 Gloria Ashby. Feel free to forward this devotion in its entirety, including this copyright line. Leave comments, ask questions, read past devotions, or subscribe to receive these devotions daily in your e-mail.