Image“Blessed are the meek, for they will inherit the earth” (Matthew 5:5, niv).

I love the title of the country/western song, “What part of no don’t you understand?”

Have you ever noticed that some of us have a difficult time saying no to people? We think we always have to be “nice” to be a good Christian and give in to others’ demands or even to their requests.

As popular author, Rick Warren, asked: “Isn’t a Christian supposed to be meek?”

And then, answering his own question, he said, “Yes, you are supposed to be meek. But meekness is not weakness. There’s a big difference. Meekness literally means ‘strength under control.’ Picture a wild stallion that has been broken and is now tamed. That stallion still has as much power as when he was wild, but now that power is bottled up for the master’s use.

“Only two people in the Bible were called meek—Jesus and Moses. Neither of them were weaklings or wimps. They were strong men of conviction. God doesn’t expect you to just cave in every time somebody wants to manipulate you or control you. What would you do if someone asked you to do something immoral or illegal or unreasonable? You’d say no!”

When someone tries to make us feel guilty if we say no to something they want us to do, a simple response like the following can be very effective: “You’re not trying to make me feel guilty are you?” Of course they will deny it, but as long as we don’t let them control or manipulate us through guilt (false guilt), in time they will stop trying to put a guilt trip on us. And by the way, people only make us feel guilty with our permission.

~Richard Innes (ACTS International)

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