Galatians 5:1 – It is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm, then, and do not let yourselves be burdened again by a yoke of slavery.
Your plate is full, yet here comes a friend wanting you to do something for them. You know you really don’t have any time in your day to help them, but you can’t find the inner strength to say, “No.” Saying “no” can be hard if you’re a people pleaser. But saying, “No,” doesn’t make you a bad person. When you don’t say, “No,” you move towards over-extending yourself, burnout and feeling like a slave. No relationship can grow if one party is treated like a slave. So how do we find the strength to say “No”? You first take it to God. He can untangle any parts of your life that are close to tripping you up. He will give you wisdom and courage to say, “No”. And he will also show you if you should put a hold on something else on your plate so that you can find time to help your friend. Whether you say, “No” or say “Yes” to a request God can help you grow that relationship without losing it to bitter anger for feeling like you’re being used. You don’t have to feel like you’re in slavery and can never do what’s best for yourself. It’s hard, but you will grow real relationships this way.
Karen Dalske is a freelance writer, public speaker, is active in her church and writes her blogs out of her own experiences of pain, illness and loss.