When God says “No”

For a person whose dreams are as big as she is crazy, it is sometimes hard for me to imagine laying those same dreams down at Jesus’ feet. There have been many – MANY times in my life where I had a dream and God said “No” to it.

There was the time I wanted to act in Hollywood.


The time I wanted to go into direct selling – twice.


The time I wanted to own a magazine.


The time I wanted to become a youth pastor.


The time I wanted to become an accomplished writer by taking an awesome writing course.


“No” doesn’t always mean “Never.”

In fact, many times, the dreams we have are noble ones… but we have to remember that God’s timing is not our own.

I truly believe I’m meant to be involved in youth. I think I may have been guilty of what many mainstream Christians can be guilty of: assigning God’s voice to one of my own desires. I’ve come to accept that I may never be a youth pastor,  but that doesn’t mean I can’t help out in youth and use my talents to the glory of God in my church’s youth group. I don’t have to be the top of the chain. God doesn’t call everyone to a high position of power – if that were the case, all the church custodians in the world would be living against the will of God.

In my life, I see God calling me to humility more often than positions of power.

I see Him reminding me, as often as necessary, that it’s not about me. I am meant to glorify God with my life, and help others. I should be a support and encouragement to those around me. The Lord has led me, through my pastor (& also through my husband), when I have begun to get off-track. Through their leadership, I have often heard the refrain, “You are a mother first.” Admittedly, it wasn’t one I was too fond of at first. Eventually, I realized that motherhood is the highest calling I have right now. It’s also one with some of the least recognition, which is probably why I took issue with it! Pride is no joke!

As our good shepherd, God leads us. Along the way, He is watching to see if we will listen to His voice.

He will be faithful to instruct us, but we must listen carefully and refuse to dig our heels in if He should say something we don’t want to hear. We must go where He leads, not where we think is right.

You may wonder, “What if it’s something we REALLY want? Can’t we just do that one little thing?”

There are no small things to God. If we disobey and do our own thing, we are not living for Him, and not acting like we are even His.

“My sheep listen to my voice; I know them, and they follow me.” John 10:27

If we are His, we follow, even when we don’t understand.






4 thoughts on “When God says “No”

  1. Danielle Bernock (@DBernock) says:

    I like how you said no doesn’t always mean never. I remember when a no turned into a yes in my life. I wanted to go on a mission trip and was told no over and over. But it was actually, not yet. I remember when I was given permission to go. I was hesitant to even ask, so was shocked when I got a yes. They were going to Guatemala. I had no idea where it was but I was going.
    I found out after I signed up that the country was involved in a civil war. Some feared. I did too, for just a second. But I remembered – I had been told yes. I have heard, and do believe “the safest place is in the center of God’s will”. I was blessed to be allowed to go there four times and serve at a home for girls. I was able to take my entire family one time. It was life changing.

    • blessedout says:


      The cool thing is that when God says “Not yet,” it’s because He’s preparing us. There are things we need to do or learn. Or sometimes He’s humbling us. Perhaps you wouldn’t have been as eager to go on that mission trip if you’d heard a “Yes,” on your first try. By the time you DID hear a “Yes,” you truly realized the Lord had spoken and were able to appreciate the great gift He’d given you. It wasn’t as easy to dismiss the idea when you knew you’d been waiting for quite some time and He’d finally said “Yes.” 🙂 (I don’t know if that’s exactly how it would have gone down, but I know that pride would have gotten in the way for me.)

      Your story reminded me of my journey to being a youth leader. I was one, when I was young. I took it for granted and got really irritated at the youth group (because they were sinners who needed a Savior – how dare they?!), and I ended up being angry at the youth pastors, too, and talking smack about them. I was very frustrated (hormones probably played a part, as I was pregnant/just had my baby, but that’s no excuse) and I left the youth group. Years later, I decided I wanted to be part of it again and just assumed I’d be able to be in it like I always had. I went to talk to my youth pastors about it (obviously I’d apologized by then… I’m not a complete idiot!), and they politely said “No, thanks.” They didn’t put it in so many words, but they made it clear that they’d had enough of my drama. I didn’t rage about it or anything, but I was struck by this realization that I’d messed up big time. Years later, I found out that they were leaving after 10 plus years in the ministry. I also knew they’d had some health problems, so I asked if I could help “tear down” after services (dumping trash, etc) so that they could get home sooner. They said yes, and eventually welcomed me into youth group as a youth leader/helper. By the time they left, our relationship was fully repaired, back to its original awesomeness. LOL

      After that, I’d helped with the youth pastors, and when those ones left abruptly, I was very grateful to be able to help the youth through a time without a youth pastor. I had my son, and took a break for a while (though I missed the youth, I realized I needed that time with my newborn), and then came back to youth ministry almost a year later. I don’t take anything for granted now. I feel it’s a privilege to minister to the youth, and a privilege to serve the youth pastors. I can’t approach things from the high horse I once had, because I realize now that God doesn’t NEED me to accomplish His purposes with the youth, or with anything. He can use me, but He doesn’t NEED me, and that is a very humbling realization. 🙂

      Anyway, I have a tendency to talk to much, but all of that to say, “I get what you mean!” 😛

  2. Randi Anderson says:

    I can’t believe I didn’t comment on this the first time I read it. I think I meant to ruminate and come back, but then it got buried in my inbox.

    Well, all I want to say is that this is spot-on. Lately God has been teaching me this lesson through choir in particular … when something doesn’t go my way, or if I get put in a lower place or even humiliated, I try to remember to humble myself and take it as a fatherly chastisement. God’s ways are not our ways, and humiliations and failures can serve a purpose.

    • blessedout says:

      I agree, Randi! I have needed to be humbled SO many times, and I thank God that He didn’t give me what I want every single time, or I’d be the spiritual equivalent of a spoiled brat (and I’m pretty sure that doesn’t work in the kingdom of God – it’s the basic element of pride that Jesus hated about the Pharisees).

      And thank you for your kind comment. 🙂

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