I have always tried to be a reliable person, but I’ve failed like everyone does from time to time. We cannot always do what we desire to do in life. The Bible says for our yes to be yes, for our no to be no. This makes things very black and white. This is something that helps us to be a person of integrity. People see our consistency. People trust our reliability. We are a better witness to Christ Jesus when we let our yes be yes, and our no be no. Our word is trusted.
The Bible tells us that when we are given much, much is then required. We have a responsibility. It is not always an easy responsibility, but we can rest in these black and white boundaries. If we are a people who do our best to have our yes mean yes and our no mean no, we are not setting ourselves up for failure. We will be seen as someone with reliability. Our words and deeds will be more likely be trusted. We will glorify the Father more by the consistency in our lives.
Don’t grieve over your past failures. I have said “yes” many times and something came up that shook things up. Take time to respond with wisdom and truth when asked to serve in a new ministry. Will you have the time? Is this where God is leading you? With the responsibility you have been given, understand you will have to say yes to some things, and no to others. There is no allowance for a yes man in ministry. When you zero in and say yes to the things God is leading you to do, you will find that serving is a joy, and there will be fruit from the reliability of your word. Remember it is not the yes or the no that matters. It all comes down to giving God the glory He alone deserves. It all comes down to pointing to Him.
“When someone has been given much, much will be required in return; and when someone has been entrusted with much, even more will be required.” – Luke 12:48 [NLT]
Most people name Paul and Peter and two of the most influential people of the early church. If you read too fast, you might miss a time when Paul actually opposed Peter. In Galatians 2, Paul wrote about the situation. This opposition was because Peter changed, he was turning back.
Peter was accepting the Gentiles. He was spending time with them, eating with them. Then there came “the party of the circumcision,” those who would not be too keen on the fact that Peter was hanging out and accepting the Gentiles. When they came on the scene, Peter started to back away from the Gentiles. Paul saw this change in behaviour and he basically held Peter accountable.
We cannot love one group, and then decide that we will not show love and grace with another group. We cannot be kind to some people, but chose to not be kind to the rest. Jesus didn’t say we could pick and choose who we would treat decent, nor who we would allow to hear the gospel.
God does not show partiality. God loves all people. If we are aiming to love people like Christ loves people, we will not be selective. Truthfully I know that we typically have some built in reservations. We are taught to avoid certain types of people, to not associate with some groups. We are raised to leave people out. Yet God tells us to let everyone in. He forgives all. He loves all. We need to embrace people as He embraces. There is no turning back.
“Love is patient, love is kind and is not jealous; love does not brag and is not arrogant, does not act unbecomingly; it does not seek its own, is not provoked, does not take into account a wrong suffered, does not rejoice in unrighteousness, but rejoices with the truth; bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.” -1 Corinthians 13:4-7 [NASB]