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Learning to Say No

Focus on the Family / Jim Daly
The Truth Network Radio
September 3, 2021 6:00 am

Learning to Say No

Focus on the Family / Jim Daly

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September 3, 2021 6:00 am

Pastor Kevin Harney offers practical guidance for simplifying your life and maintaining a healthy margin in your busy schedule by focusing your energy on your highest priorities and saying 'no' to those of lesser importance.

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Summers was little you can do or say no, so you can say yes to the right things and unleash that peace and the joy that comes from Val Sophie life Kevin Hardy joins us today on Focus on the Family and your hostess focus Pres. and Dr. Jim Daly on John Fuller know about you, John, with my wife. Visit somewhat never a dull moment. Our world is fast-paced and keeping up that it takes constant effort to stand top of it all work and family and errands and other obligations. I'm sure people in the audience are going to get check check check your finding margin can be a challenge but it is crucial to do so.

Jesus did it, of course, in Matthew 1128 Jesus tells us come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. What a wonderful promise that is in today we want to give you some tools to help you simplify your life by cutting out distractions and making wise choices who wants to do that. I see your hand sign me up. Well as I said, we have Kevin Hardy with us that he's the founder of organic outreach international and also serves as the lead pastor at shoreline church in Monterey California. He's married to Sherry they have three married sons, three grandchildren and Kevin sounds busy and is that he's learned a lot of prioritize the important things, and he's captured his insights in this book know is a beautiful word, hope and help for the overcommitted and occasionally exhausted look for your copy online would get the details in the episode notes Kevin welcome back to focus its adjoining back in with both you and the whole team yet amazing team.

I believe you're right that I I do believe we have a great team and I'm so glad that you didn't say no to being with us, so that's good.

As I guess margin was there for you. Flying out from California and say hi to us. I have spotted I noticed that you guys are not one of now the problem is know is such a hard word for us, especially in the Christian community. How do we use it effectively.

Great question and I think that because we worship a Savior whose compassionate whose loving who you know when we say a man so be it. So often he says I love you God provides. EE protects and yet were not all-powerful, were not all know it we we can't do everything were bound by time and down by space and bye-bye schedules and especially those families went much of the family.

Your schedule distills up in ways you never dreamed it would be for that is so true, and it doesn't necessarily get easier as they get older.

My oldest son, his wife just had their first child. Localities only nine weeks old and their life is changed and so I suggest this process of saying no to certain things so you can say yes to the right things has really become a new part of their lives.

Balancing this I mean this is something you learn.

Over the years. I feel like I've done a lot better job. The older I get, I'm better at saying no. So I don't know if that's wisdom urges disgruntled Valley Italianate but balancing his priorities really came into play for you as a dad I think you had something called dad home. Night and what happened, what, when we moved into our neighborhood in West Michigan. We had 11 boys under 11 years old today removed and not us, but the neighbor that the cul-de-sac and other kids and surrounding area and when I go out and hang out with my boys it would become an immediate neighborhood game time and I love I love to play. I'm just on the phone with my voice and this when they were little. I go out and at one point, my youngest son said. He said dad could we ever play with just you and I thought I thought Nate what a great guy sitting yeah he seems every time we come out the whole neighborhood comes in. I said you know what I said working to have times where it's kind of dad's son play time and so I told the neighborhood kids hate. Sometimes when he coheres to be that some playtime sometimes can be neighbored play time slip and soap when I say Stetson plate and you gotta go away and here's the amazing thing they understood.

So they went home and said that there dad's leg dead when we met in Berkeley as they might have, but what they understood was so then they went over they say your playtime with your voice visit playtime for the neighborhood and I say silly playtime with my voice. This will wins our turn. I say an hour half right. Say tomorrow and that simple. No transformer relation with my boys because they realize that I was saying no to the neighborhood to say yes to them and we also had nights where it would recommend me home. Come home from work and not go back to work again as a whole another realm of saying no to my work, so they say yes to my attention because what you're what you're tapping into is an example of prioritization yes and it's so hard for us to do that at times you know when you look at that. How do you prioritize what your inner circle what your next ring what your ring after that. How did you do that and what will yet will and I think that that for followers of Jesus we start the Scriptures in my boys have always known that my walk with Jesus my claimant to him is action more important to me. So strange that either their mom, my wife or them and then they also know that my relation with my wife is more important to me that ma'am even more important, but I I told my boy prioritize my boys don't you ever try to get between me and your mom is an owner longer and I know you and I love her long hair long not to live with their lot line is there's there's that too and I would be just as to celebrated 38 years, and one so out and so that they get that picture but yet so just establishing and saying okay. Might my faith is going to be and so often we don't say no. It's our faith or time with Jesus, that the thing that is pumped off the plate and can disappears. Then family and be a people say those things about your faith and family and then work but but often is not live it out unless you establish with Boutwell now was the reason for the question because that was a very practical example doing that saying no to the neighborhood boys so you can have no unique time with your own kids yes and I think that's a great example for you. Compare schedules to a buffet line okay got my attention.

Okay so you walked down the buffet line and that that may be on his property as it used to be when I was growing up as a big thing for family go to buffet because you can get whatever you want and then I kind options say so what you take it with us.

Looks nice now with that but that the problem is you have an online ego. I'm out of space and injury to take things off, which is kinda rude on the buffet to put something down. Greg said that the that the visual is this if your life is like a plate and with your work with your faith with your family with your free time. Your personal hobbies whatever it is, at some point the plague is full and then if you slide something onto the plate is truly full something falls off.

It's just the science of his is that the mathematics isleft something you slide on something falls off. When I began to discover in my life and that he was watching is that people who couldn't say letting new things on and not intentionally take out something less important. So what happens more important things to fall off the back of the plate. Usually the kids the marriage personal health time with Jesus and all the sons were saying yes to things and were accidentally saying I could be leasing all the time even because I can never say I can't say no.

So is your life will yeah you plateful yeah you're saying all the time slip something new on the plate. Something's falling off.

Sounds like intentionality yes and that's another way to describe that have to be intentional about what you put on your plate and outputting was always something of the buffet. Just keep piling that I have times don't you play pretty close to putting a morning you say in the book every yes is a no every knows yes I like that I get it described in more detail. It's really truly revolutionary and right when I was sharing this with people for years before I wrote the book because I was trying to learn how to balance my life and and with all the things that I do in love I had.

I to balance out and so I begin to look and realize that when your plate is full.

It's when I explained it when your plate is full. When you say yes to something new. Yeah I can do jump into that men's softball league and that that I'm saying no to my going to my daughter's recital. If I say yes to this new commitment I'm say no to something and so the opposite is true. If I want to really intentionally give guidance and and bounders to my life and I say yes to something I know right now. Say yes to come and be with you two gentlemen and with your audience today. I said no to something spec in Monterey. That's how life works so I actually stop and think about those and icily asking what had to do something. I said well I said my plate is full gimmie two or three days and see if I can remove a few things to make room to do that. He left me. I said no that's I can't say yes to you and less as if I say yes to.

I need to remove something for my life. I decide what is it I can do that if we grasp it is worth it. Wow, I never look so some of them we end up kind of saying yes to it.

I totally things are remove this late in the conversation and he said to meet him in a personal, he said, can you walk me through this night.

My life is really fall.

I've never thought about intentional yes intentional nose to keep my life balance the site and ended the book was read at this time, but it was being formed my heart my mind that that's it it when you say yes to something, you get a deep singles on this but when you say no to something you can say yes to something even better. Yes, just assigning Kevin some people listening might not understand that because they don't perceive themselves to be there plate is folding. You know I've got recreational time. I have space for my family, but you know kind of describe that discussion with your friend because even those people may not be realizing that if you have downtime that's that's part of what's on your plate and if you squeeze other things in the new probably begin to eliminate some of the downtime. So I'm just not so sure everyone is as aware as you were of what their inventory. Yes, when one of the things in the world is changed in the last you know, probably 5 to 8 years. Assault was always changing, but with kind of the accessibility of on-demand video and and and shows and TV.

I went up in people's schedule getting more and more filled with things that product that important to pick dill binge watching the show the screen to screen time and so I find that most people ask you have a sense of feeling like they're pretty busy but I say to busy doing what right. That's the next question here that that's the question so so people don't often stop and look and and I would say for your listeners. It's not a hard process to stop and say okay even if you don't give a written schedule so he will yesterday ride to the day before.

What filled my time and are the things refilling my time most the things I really want be saying yes to you that the thing about the way media works now is when the show is done, it pops up and says, by the way, here's neck show you to watch this. Let's keep on going boom boom boom and it is what we are saying no women advancing only there to show a family just went to watch one show the return to the office is all these decisions and is again is saying usually saying no no no no, so I can say yes yes yes and you're describing something that can be difficult for people to call discipline so you are saying almond a lot myself and our they fill the number I don't want to offend in the two hours have watching the news or whatever might be and then you know a half-hour doing my morning devotional. No praying with my spouse, whatever hat do you are you a fan of allocating an regimen in yourself to that kind of discipline yet I think that the more you do it the more intentional you are, the less it is regimented, the more it feels like life if you you actually can breathe, just the way you do. You get. It's just the way you do your day and so when you say no to certain things is my final suit it off. I say no to that guilty him feel bad when you miss so much. But when they start to say no to certain things are just time fillers. This officer like this like I got room and then they began to slow down and spend time with people they love were spent time doing some this more meaningful and also the delight becomes more rich and so people are afraid to say no, but once they learn to do it.

It is incredibly free well and that leads to the other question the power saying no and what have you.

One at this within your own family to have an example or two. Oh yeah, I'm in one of my what a life changing moment for me was when we are away actually in Colorado with our boys on the ski trip. They were probably maybe seven and six, eight and 10. Some like that.

I'm if I was there, she tell you exactly how you exactly right I'm pricing.

I estimate you and so what we are way I dress work with me was or should Madonna shows a notably brought some work and was working on. I went to my wife and I she said yes read this thing and this this pastor was talking about how he blocks on three nights a week where he just doesn't go back to work, you make sure that he's drunk as they'd like Sunday night service is made when sent feminist, but there's three next week. He would come home and not go back to work. I said to her.

If I'm not careful I can go back to work every night of work at home every night and my wife very graciously said, you do. I do know it and so I prematurely said no I don't and I she said she's I think you do and very Christ is not yet married to a seven-year-old SI sigh Simon look at mice my schedule show you and I got my schedule and I to turn back three weeks to find one night I had brought work home got back to the office and it broke my heart I ask.

I promise I would not become that kind of pastor that come to dad and so I actually said to my voice and to my wife. I made a commitment in my congregation shared with them three nights a week I would go home and I'm not can go back to the church. My church work. My cognition members what they said we we agree what we don't want to work seven days a week they were asking out of me. But here's the fun part for us not to come home, I walk into my Sunday Madison jumps my back to you not go back to working a playlist all night. I said I am Bonnie, we have a great night that had like three or four times in a row.

Then about the fifth or sixth time I come home on a debt home night as I wait for next up my back is he's not there. I looked up on the rest of the wash has asked since Sherry was night so he's playing with DJ so was Josh's play with different words that he's off of the front is I don't know it's a debt home night and she said no.

They said you're always here totally 180 redeemed right because I just made those decisions and and I can tell you something from that point on in our family life.

I kept that route that can that rhythm and my boys.

They love the church they're not bitter towards the church were taken it out away while so many pastors need to hear that and so many professionals of the same thing Kevin Lemaster all knows the same.

And what does the menu of nose look like nestle in the book. One of fun things about this book is that because I was doing for myself some of the chapters are paragraph long summer for parents in the chapter to every page that the Wanda chapter 3 pages long, is 60 chapters long for you to chapters one chapter. You can read about about 24 seconds I read I finished chapter usually really good about yourself.

You are a high achiever exactly exactly as is but one of the thing is sections is called know your nose.

I got all these different kinds of nose and their very different. I am a nuclear know is why called know never offend you asked me. Don't ever ask me again. That's my nuclear know if Sunday comes in and asked to do something immoral or illegal. I don't say oh no, thanks. I need to find the right words to say you know what is not who I am.

You never have to ask me again because that's against my character that's good for you yeah oh yeah and you kids nuclear know yet then there's times when and I and I have and I have and then there sometimes is a no or some yes it is something you go you know it. Not the best person for the know but I know a guy and know by know a woman who help you with that said I'm a notice know but I know someone in your pass off the know that the opportunity someone else there. There's a know but maybe another time you get the door open all kinds of ways to say no and what you learn them have a menu situation comes you okay which of the nose. I can use and I find most circumstances, you divide two or three or four I tell people make up your own notes and I tell him know you know's attempt to kudos my site and know's know you know your nose and then choose and pick your nose and then, don't feel bad. And yet when you say no because your say yes to something better. I love the balance that you bring into this topic Kevin Hardy as our guest on Focus on the Family were talking about his book knows a beautiful word and I hope you'll contact us to get your copy.

We've got details in the episode notes Kevin let me come back to that nuclear know it may not be in that category. But something happened for you and in that way at 13. What decision was that I think this is a great parenting example. This is what has become an automatic no, I don't ever consider saying yes to this one and silly to what happened at 13, my dad's mom sat me down my granny and I loved my grannie she was one of the extent that we were hundred people were the only Christians in my whole can atheistic, agnostic family and she sat me down. She said Kevin your dad. My son Terry is an alcoholic and he sees these very functional. He's got a very she's very successful what he does but she said he's controlled all costs and my first husband. His dad died in the gutter as a drunk. His father is she and the family history and his father and his father, and she looked at me with with tears in her eyes. She said don't be the next generation of men in this family who is controlled by alcohol.

We promise we'll never drink and I said I it's too late already, but I was already drinking at RD smoking marijuana and I said but I promise I'll never do it again and and so from that day I have never in our wedding toast with champagne.

Not even a step. I just made the decision I made the decision that that that is an automatic absolute know for me. Kevin let me talk to about a parenting tool that I've actually expressed in some of the books I've written a good bed and other resources. Many of us as parents we want to try to say yes to our kids more than we say no because we can get into a rhythm of saying no to her kids and I just wanted to offer you that opportunity to differentiate between kind of the scheduling know you get overcommitted your plate is full and how in parenting the yes no decisions that you make fill me in on that. Yeah so I talked about saying no to the no monster don't become the know much will become that pathos is not everything that so, controlling and overcautious so Sherry and I when I boys were young we agreed that we would say yes as often as we could so we could think away those nose we really need to speak it's a great strategy and social worker. Boys came to us and said satellite meant that I just want have a mattress on the floor. I like when I don't like wearing a a sleeping suit with a little pocket sleeping suits, pajamas you can.

I just sleep in a mattress before the blanket and just like some boxer shorts shorts or something and and so should have a car so Sherry can series a little bit more arguably more structured home that I did nice I said honey, this is a yes this not a big deal and I said we don't have roads on the floor.

It's not unclean.

You know, and so we said yes and with it within a few months, all three reports run in pipe and mattress on the floor and others, cool and and and so we stored away that the wood for the frames right and but but is one of those things where we did say no. They knew we meant it, but when they knew we would try to say yes and how can one my voice can be said that we would have ramp for missile docket hustle pond and ride bikes in the pond I sweatshirts assuredly to go inside for a while I would build this ramp and they and they it was beautiful and it was so fun to what they should off this ramp and into the waters was pretty safe you. I should only do and I'm here some of their watch, and eventually renting a seat at doing a lifejackets isolate that your mom's Department-audience what they want to see my wavelike text. Oh she was so excited that they're going to use lifejackets as she gets couple lifejackets. They were not that upsetting the title lifejackets on the bike right. Keep the bug so I thought they were busy but we said yes, but only when I've been there. But here's a caveat, but I need out here to watch some happens and it was a blast and at night and I think that voice need to be adventurous and do stuff that I get us I will tell you before that a disclaimer, you know, no children were in the taping of the sin of the neighbors to edit notes.

I know small animals and always must comes on me and not focus on the family I love. But what your next example well had a relationship is okay so my my my sons came to me sedan.

We were set up. It might be little aboveground pool and middle part was done about 9 feet deep and he said daddy look at that at the roof is look at the windows bedroom sedan you can, I went out the window.

My bedroom and ran across like a jump in the pool. Here's my new he was going to do it if I if I said no. I definitely talk not talking here about what I guess it's a ghost inside on this one that I set up. I said listen buddy I said here's the thing. If you do get hold the edge of the dormer. Yet it going to go about fighting in the got jump feet first in the middle. Your friends can't do it.

Only you can II knew if he did without me there is a dangerous II knew if he did with me. There was, it was not dangerous it wasn't that it was aboveground pool is about 4 feet from here to here, but he did it perfect for me for five times. The board never did it again, but he did with dad.

Their watch, he said to me that if I slipped and fell.

It would hurt my soul, but it would hurt you that you could like you to hurt yeah she got super careful. But I said I said as I Thomas I got thinking to the sometime can smile I thought. Let's do it in a controlled environment not to cut the soccer program and not all responsibly comes a Kevin Hardy and you play me nothing. Kevin let me ask you to you right about a little change you made when you're checking out the store. I think this is a great application or just Christian you what is it and why did it change you. So it's more like at Christmas time for about six or eight weeks and I realize everyone was going to be like to be that Salvation Army bellringer it would be equally round up your bill will offer food for hungry kids could be joining the dollar towards Destin and I was getting so irritated sick I just buy you dinner, not around, I got I just got in and I found myself in a crummy attitude and I and I life I thought you just can say yes every single three cents to get it if I was given a 5-593 at seven cents and so and so I thought I only say yes I must say yes really enthusiastically sex.

I watched her face, the do you want to do so used to knows that what they want me to ask this question but that the work makes them do it so II basically I made this decision and so for since that time. This was years ago.

Also look at. Yes, I'd love to someone like the start of the will and this I am an enemy say yes all day. I said now and now I'm starting to ask, ask, what is for the don't give anything or something's out there that I don't support. So what's up for the tongue of the absolute.

It is for hungry kids. If it's for helping foster programs of the housing absolutely is a smile to their face and everything of that first Christmas time at the other cat the other Christmas outback. I figured out it was like 25 or $35 altogether for the year Christmas season I made like 20 or 30 people happy that I said yes and I was less cranky because I might have an automatic sets on those ones where at the end of I go to cut the yes is and how it frees I'm not does he know these things and less there asked me to give her something that I don't support for my own values. Kevin you were right at the end I think this is been great good reminder for us in our own self-discipline to remember to say no. So the rift we don't have to push other things off the plate and to say yes to our kids as much as we can. When it comes to involvement in Hageman.

Yes, time spent with them, etc. I'm thinking of a mom who maybe volunteers at school. Sounds a little bit like my wife Jean when we had the kids in school.

Maybe church to and runs her kids everywhere because they're in soccer this or that or the dad who's trying to get ahead at work so is working a bit late like you were.

They say yes to a lot and it costs them.

What's the Christian thing to do, what would you say to them at the end of the program and how could they get on better footing and move toward more confident no. Why would say no your nose come up. You covered lots of different as I asked W practicing going about enclosing or saying no, no, thank you know it just the word coming out your mouth right and don't do this around her spouse, yet not at but also I tell people saying no is a great act of love and understand that but that one last a short little story I was in a restaurant with my with my sons and there was a mom with a another set aside about my son's age in the subject out of control is out of control and everything in the Russians, watching as it was just really cannot not a pretty sight. And as I watch as I looked at my son realized that he was watching. Also in and he looked me sedan. Why doesn't that mommy love her son. I said buddy what what you would immediately feet, if she loved him, she would let him act that way.

While she C she he read he realized that the reason I would let him act that way. The reason he hit that Sherry and I have boundaries is because we love him interested in a young age and he realized this mom didn't. He was like she doesn't love her son enough to say no. So say that mom sometimes was loving. He can do is say no, so you can say yes to the right things and unleash that peace and that joy that comes from balanced healthy life Kevin, this is been so good and I hope people will be encouraged and take some of these lessons away from the discussion today and I just want to say thank you so much for taking the time and saying yes to being with us and you you guys an automatic yes to me.

I love you I love you do here. I love your ministry is impacting all of the world.

And so to come alongside do anything to help is a privilege something.

Thank you for the invitation that let me remind our listeners were here for you and if you're struggling in this area in your life is chaotic because you're not finding God shalom his peace in your life because you're saying yes to too much get in touch with us.

We have caring Christian counselors who can help you and discuss that issue with you. In addition to great resources.

One of which is Kevin Harney's wonderful book knows a beautiful word and if you can participate with us in ministry.

We don't pay shareholder dividends like the online people do all the money that you you send the focus goes right back in the ministry. So if you can make a gift of any amount will send a copy of Kevin's book as our way of saying thank you for being part of the ministry and helping others and you can do that through monthly pledge or one-time gift. Either way will send a copy of the book you get in touch today. Donate.

As you can and get a copy of Kevin's book are numbers 800 the letter a in the word family 800-232-6459 or click the link in the episode. Have a great weekend and be sure to join us on Monday can cost it will help you better understand how to discover God's purpose for your life if you know you why you find your way. If you don't everything else is in the way you know why somehow the mountains, the pet is being half of Jim Daly and the entire team. Thanks for joining us today for Focus on the Family on John Fuller inviting you back. As we once again, you and your family thrive and I knew my marriage was falling apart. I just didn't know how to fix it. I felt like I would always be alone even if I stayed married at Focus on the Family's hope restored marriage intensive. We offer hope to couples in crisis so they can have the marriage they always dreamed for the first time I felt like my husband truly heard me. I received some great tools from the counselor said of change my life and my marriage to begin the journey of finding health go to hope today

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