Learning to Say, “No Thanks.”

Listen to this….  I mean really listen.  There is so much wisdom in these few words: 

“The rush and pressure of modern life are a form, perhaps the most common form, of contemporary violence. To allow oneself to be carried away by a multitude of conflicting concerns, to surrender to too many demands, to commit oneself to too many projects, to want to help everyone in everything is to succumb to violence.”  Thomas Merton

I think that means we have to learn how to say, “No, I’m sorry but that’s not for me,” as often as we need to, even to things we might enjoy and to people we love. 

 

I see that same thing reflected in these words Jesus spoke to the disciples:  “Get away with me and you’ll recover your life. I’ll show you how to take a real rest. Walk with me and work with me—watch how I do it. Learn the unforced rhythms of grace.”  (Matthew 11, The Message

Religious performance will exahust you as it leaves you frustrated.  Learning to live in the Father’s affection will set you at ease and lead to fruitfulness and an inner fulfillment that no busyness can produce.  

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2 Comments
  1. Pat Pope October 17, 2013 at 1:06 pm

    So very true.  I’ve had to learn after moving in with my 82-year old mother the things to say “no” or “not now” to.  I think the Greatest generation or Silent generation was so used to that rugged determination that they often labored without putting up a fuss, never showing much emotion or disdain for something–they just did it.  Well, I’m not part of that generation and I’ve learned and am still learning about healthy boundaries and being human and in touch with my emotions and being okay with being tired and needing a break.  I don’t need to kill myself doing for her.  Plus, if I did, what good would I be to her?  That’s the whole reason I moved in–to be a help to her. 

  2. Pat Pope October 17, 2013 at 4:06 pm

    So very true.  I’ve had to learn after moving in with my 82-year old mother the things to say “no” or “not now” to.  I think the Greatest generation or Silent generation was so used to that rugged determination that they often labored without putting up a fuss, never showing much emotion or disdain for something–they just did it.  Well, I’m not part of that generation and I’ve learned and am still learning about healthy boundaries and being human and in touch with my emotions and being okay with being tired and needing a break.  I don’t need to kill myself doing for her.  Plus, if I did, what good would I be to her?  That’s the whole reason I moved in–to be a help to her. 

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