by Rev. Fr. V.V. Paulose, Toronto, Canada
"No" (Mathew 4:4).
Are we reluctant to say 'NO'?
Jesus says, "Let what you say be simply 'Yes' or 'No'. Anything more than that comes from evil." (Mathew 5:37). Peace of mind is a fundamental necessity to living a good life. Our ability to say 'No' is a major factor on our subjective well being and our sense of satisfaction. Use No as your teacher. The present generation of kids are very good in telling No to anything that they don't like. But gradually, as they grow big, they lose the backbone to say No when required.
Emerson wrote: "Sayers of NO" is better than the "Sayers of YES". When faced with options, you should be able to make a good choice immediately. Nip unwanted things in the bud itself. Leonardo da Vinci's wise words can be helpful to us in our decision making process - "It is easier to resist at the beginning than in the end." Jesus was tempted by Satan on three crucial areas. But Jesus did not give in. He resisted the temptations of the devil by telling a big 'NO' to Satan and quoted the scriptures.
A publisher visited Peter in his office and asked him if he would be interested in writing a book about the history of the law profession in America. This book, Peter was told, would be a ten year project and would require hiring researchers. He clearly knew that this was not how he wanted to spend the last decade or so of his legal career or his life. He didn't say, "Let me think about it." Instead, he said a clear "NO".
"We do not generally suffer from others: we suffer from ourselves. I have shown you the way to liberation, now you must take it for yourself." - The Buddha
Jesus, give us your spirit of courage to say No to all the temptations and allurement of sin. We pray for those who yield and suffer by the compromise of their conscience. Give them the mind and courage to say NO to temptations. We ask this in the name of Jesus.
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