1) I didn't finish something I started . . . and that is not like me! While I waited (very impatiently) for my shipment of books that I ordered last week, I decided to pick up a Hemingway novel to read in the meantime. As a teacher I loved Hemingway novels. His writing style was familiar, and his character development was fascinating from a literary perspective. But outside that teaching role, I prefer books that are edifying and encouraging. The more I read this novel, I felt my spirit being sucked into the dysfunctional and delusional world of these characters. I was reminded of the sad and lonely life that Hemingway lived and how it influenced his character development and overall themes in his work. It made me think about my own purpose for writing. Like Hemingway, I write from a very imperfect life with a plethora of character flaws of my own. But instead of drawing readers into that mess, I desire to shine the light of Christ's redemption and hope into my mess and therefore bring encouragement to you. So I closed the book and said, "NO more." I instantly felt the freedom of release, and it was OKAY to not finish this one.
(By the way, as I wrote #1, my box of books arrived!)
2) I had to say "NO" to self-doubt and insecurities this week. It has been a long time since I have been hit this hard with these issues. As I was praying through this one I felt a gentle perspective change come on. Sometimes the enemy wants to bring us down, and it is usually when God is being glorified somewhere in our lives. So maybe despite my own doubts and insecurities, God was glorified either through my words or actions this week. One tool in my toolbox that I pulled out was Renee Swope's 7 Day Doubt Diet. I would encourage you to check this out if you ever struggle with self-doubt and insecurities like I do.
3) I enjoy my alone time every morning, but after this week I was pretty exhausted last night. Despite my normal routine, I said "NO" to setting the alarm for Saturday morning. I slept until 9 a.m., and it was good! I feel like the Lord blessed and honored my decision to rest.
Thank you for taking your precious time to read my heart today! May you find moments this weekend to say "NO", opening up a pathway for God's goodness to enter into your heart, your mind, and those relationships you hold dear. AMEN
"Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For My yoke is easy and My burden is light." Matthew 11: 28-30