Learning to Say Yes
According to the story I heard through the grapevine, the family had already adopted multiple times when the wife received a call asking if they’d take a newborn. The child’s prospective adoption had fallen through shortly after birth. The mother receiving the call said yes. Then she called her husband. Of course, he said yes too and their family grew overnight.
I wondered what it would be like for the husband to receive that call from his wife.
“Honey, we’re having a baby. Today.”
Being single, it’s hard for me to envision that kind of a situation, but I began to wonder what it would be like to be a wife receiving the same phone call.
“Honey, set an extra plate at the table tonight, I’m bringing home another child.”
In this hypothetical, I thought about the practical things: finances, space, food, etc. Would I honestly be able to say “Yes, that’s great!”?
The ugly truth is: I’ve already said no.
We all have.
- I say no when I support ministries with everything but my wallet.
- I say no when I sign up to bring the cheapest item on the menu for local starving children.
- I say no when I hand a child back to his mother when he gets orange spit-up on my new white dress.
- We say no every time we divert our eyes at the end of the off-ramp to avoid acknowledging the face of the hungry human.
- We say no when we decide the perfect time to use the restroom during a concert is when the performer is talking about child sponsorship.
- We say no when we come up with excuses to stay in our comfortable homes, comfortable jobs, and comfortable over-full closets.
We say no when we choose to ignore the problem in hopes that it will go away.
It won’t go away without us.
- We say yes when we buy a college student coffee.
- We say yes when we grocery shop for a family working too many jobs and still struggling to make ends meet.
- We say yes when we tutor local children who are not excelling in school.
- We say yes when we take a hot lunch to a shut-in.
- We say yes when we cut the grass for the single mother.
- We say yes when we look someone in the eye and genuinely ask how he’s doing.
Maybe we’re not getting phone calls asking us to take in abandoned children. But every day we’re passing up moments to say yes to living a better story.
Sometimes living a better story means “Yes” no matter how outrageous the request of the person on the other end of the line.
Have you ever said yes to something that was extremely difficult? How did it turn out?
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