I know you’ve been there. I know everyone is asking for everything from you. It happens literally everywhere you go, doesn’t it?
When you take your child to school, it’s “Can you help plan the class party?” When you take your kid to sign up for soccer, it’s “Can you volunteer to coach this year?” When you get your family to church, it’s “Can you teach a class this quarter?”
Everyone wants you to be the ride, the teacher, the planner, the organizer, the host, the errand runner, the coach, the volunteer, and more. But it’s OK to say no. In fact, it’s actually necessary.
So many of us feel that if they didn’t need us, they wouldn’t have asked us, and so we don’t want to let others down by declining a request for a project. But we were never meant to say yes to everything. In 1 Corinthians 12, we are told we all have our own spiritual gifts and ways we can serve the Lord and our fellow man. You cannot expect yourself to act as an eye if you are a foot, but we all have our own roles to play as part of the body.
Over-committing and overextending yourself will only leave you feeling exhausted and inefficient, and for good reason. We each have the things we are good at, our strengths. Imagine if every task you took on you were able to do with full joy, because you are utilizing those strengths and loving what you do.
Imagine no more half-done parties that bore, no more teachers whose students know they don’t really want to be there, no more athletes suffering because their coaches don’t actually like or know much about the sport, no more events with the stress of someone not doing their part in full because that particular task is at the bottom of their priority list.
There is plenty of room in this world for all of us to succeed, for all of us to matter, for all of us to have a part to play using the special and unique gifts God gave us. So when something doesn’t suit your skill set and doesn’t drive and inspire you, say no. You will thank yourself, and when someone steps in who can fill that role with joy and heart, everyone else will be grateful too.