This past week I have started an online bible study with a few thousand women from around the world. It is on the book ‘What Happens When Women Say Yes to God” by Lysa TerKeurst. Wow! It is amazing what God has said this week to me.
At first I was not going to do this study as I am currently doing a couple of courses through Booth University College and had to go to Winnipeg for a couple of weeks. I was trying to use all the skills learned in the last study and say no to some things so that my life was not so hectic. However, I really felt that God was pushing me to do this study…so I said yes.
In the first chapter, Lysa tells us the six most important words. “Whatever God says do, do it.” This is not something to just quickly read over. I read it several times and have been thinking about what it means to do whatever God asks. Let’s be real, it’s not easy to say yes to God because he asks us to do things that we don’t necessary want to do. At least that is true for me.
Looking back at a life changing moment that I said Yes to God, I am reminded of the decision to let Him lead me into full time ministry as a pastor in The Salvation Army. I will honest say that I did not immediately say yes. Actually my first, second, third…and so on, was actually a very clear and definite NO! There was no way that I could preach, teach and minister to people. This was so far out of my comfort zone that it might have been on the other side of the planet or another planet entirely!! I was an accountant/administrator. I was good with numbers and facts….not people. And definitely not in sharing my faith and being completely transparent.
Finally, I decided to say yes. And my life has never been the same. As I reflect back over the last ten years, I can see how God has been doing amazing things in my life and allowing me to be part of his plan. I am actually overwhelmed by the priviledge that I have to care and minister to his people.
So in reading this chapter, I was thinking that I had said yes to God and completely turned my life and family’s lives upside down. So I’m good. I’ve met my quotas of yes’ and I can just coast through the days before me. WRONG!! It hit me like a brick that I am very quick to say no to God. Yes, I am serving him in full-time ministry, but how many times has he asked me to go beyond my area of comfort and I have made excuses. How many times have I said to God that I can’t possibly take on anything else. Life is too busy, my schedule is full.
I did not want to answer these questions. I was reading this chapter and working on the questions as I flew to Winnipeg on Sunday and it was very hard not to throw the book across the airport. I think there was a moment when I wanted to pull a 2-year temper tantrum. Let me tell you, it’s very hard to control ones outward reaction when this internal battle is going on.
So I need to say Yes to God first. I need to have perfect surrender and be radically obedient to God.
Lysa ends the chapter with a piece of advice. “We have to set our rules and agendas aside — our dos and don’ts, our social graces and proper places — and follow God’s command.” (page 20).
So, here I go to be radically obedient to God. I’m thinking there might be some changes that need to be made. But I rest in the full assurance that God will equip me and strength me. And he has already sent over 20,000 women to do this study with me…so what more do I need. Oh yeah, I need to say YES!