Saying Yes to the World May Mean Saying No To God
Throughout High School and even still in college, I love to stay busy and constantly be doing something. It got to a point where I never had free time to stop what I was doing to help somebody because I had previous commitments. I had so many responsibilities and leadership positions that I was not giving my all to everything I was doing. I had no free time to relax and unwind.
This is when my mentored pulled me aside and told me a phrase that sticks with me:
When you say "yes" to something, you are saying no to something else
Every time I did something or took on a new commitment, I was inadvertently saying no to a plethora of potential opportunities. You lose that time you could have used doing one thing and trade it for something else. You surrender the potential to give a few things your all to endeavoring to balance a lot and only be mediocre at them.
Approaching my senior year of college, I have witnessed people come to Christ and stray away once again. They begin traveling the path of the wide road once again causing them to lose sight of God and surrendering their relationship.
"Enter by the narrow gate. For the gate is wide and the way is easy that leads to destruction, and those who enter by it are many. For the gate is narrow and the way is hard that leads to life, and those who find it are few."
-Matthew 7: 13-14, ESV
Once these friends got what they thought they wanted from God, they went back to going to parties and indulging in the temptations of drug abuse and drunkenness. When you say "yes" to watching porn or premarital sex, you are saying "no" to the healthy and fruitful sexuality that God intended for you. Little do they know when they do that, they are saying yes to the world and no to God. That time they spend with their hedonistic pleasures is time that could have been used diving into the Word, worshiping Christ via music, serving the needs of others, praying, and developing their relationship with Christ.
They soon notice the happiness they get from these are not enough to sustain joy. That joy can only be found in Christ. They then continue to look for things that will bring them temporary happiness until they finally hit their rock bottom. Then they realize there is no trade off for the joy of Christ.
How do you find that joy once again?
Lets change the phrase around to now say "saying yes to God may mean saying no to the world."
"Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect."
Following Christ means abdicating your old way of life for a life of righteousness. You are saying "yes" to following Christ. You are saying "yes" to obeying His commands. This can mean that you are saying "no" to things you once did like sleeping around, partaking in drugs, and drinking for drunkenness.
Once you start saying "yes" to God, you will see a renewal of your mind. We, as Christians, are called to be in the world, but not of it. We are made to live in communion with God and fellow Christians and live a sanctified life. Do not trade the joy, hope, and peace that results from that for a few moments of fleeting happiness.