Saying No to Good Stuff

I hate saying no to good stuff.

Saying no to bad stuff is hard enough.  Anyone who has ever tried to kick a bad habit can testify to that.  But turning down a really great opportunity kills me and I think it is almost harder.  It’s certainly harder for me to justify.

I had a really great opportunity come across my e-mail today.  I really wanted to just say yes immediately.  Yes, I’d love to do that thing.  Only problem is, saying yes to too much can kill me too.  I know this.  But I’m not the greatest at doing what I know is true in this area.  I really want to just be a yes man.

But I can’t.

So, to that end, here’s how I’m trying to decide what to say yes to and what to say no to these days.  Perhaps these five questions will help you decide what is best too.  They are in no particular order:

  1. DESTINATION:  Where do I see my life headed and will this opportunity move me further towards that goal?
  2. FAMILY:  How will this affect my wife and family?  Can they go with me?  What else am I inherently saying no to if I say yes to this? 
  3. MARGIN:  Where does this opportunity fit in the grander scope of my calendar?  Do I have the margin in my life to do this? 
  4. MOTIVE:  Is saying yes to this opportunity about a calling from God or a desire for approval from people?
  5. F WORDS:  how do I foresee that this could affect my friendships, my finances, and my faith?
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Brian Berry
Brian Berry is a proven veteran of student ministry. He serves as the generation ministries pastor at Journey Community Church near San Diego, California, where he works directly with the high school ministry and oversees a staff that is responsible for infants through teens. Brian is also a frequent blogger, writes and teaches for youth workers, and is the author of both As for Me and My Crazy House and Criticism Bites. He speaks at various conferences, camps, and retreats for a variety of audiences. He is married to Shannon, and they have five kids.

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