Don’t you love the word yes? It’s so joyful and cooperative, and it’s such a door opener. Just saying “yes” can make us and others smile. Try it. Say it out loud. See. You smiled, didn’t you? Yes has its roots in happy. And who doesn’t need more of both?
Yes can be a skylight for the soul, it can aerate our attitudes, and it can be a bridge over misunderstanding. Yes is a seal of approval, an Enter Here sign, a “permission granted” document. Yes is powerful, permissive, and pleasing . . . most of the time. . . .
[A] huge yes in my life was when my heart opened to having God’s truth as my guiding counsel. For years I was stuck in an emotional whirlpool, and it wasn’t until I was being sucked under by a wave of desperation that my cry for help changed. Instead of expecting God to fix me, I told him I would do whatever he asked of me. From that time forward my life changed as I stopped talking about what I believed and began living it. It was as if yes unlocked a door within me. And I began a purposed study of God’s Word and how to walk in it.
The first thing that I did was get out of bed, get dressed, and start functioning in my home. I began putting others’ needs ahead of my fears, which were multiple, and I created new tapes for my mind. By that I mean my thought life was a tangle of negativity and criticism, so I began to memorize God’s Word to repair misconceptions and maligning attitudes. I was awash in darkened thought cycles, so I chose verses that brought them into the light of truth.
For instance, I had a wretched view of my worth, so I began bathing my mind in Psalm 139. It was hard to believe that God was present when I was being knit together in my mother’s womb, that I pleased him, and that he loved me. I began rehearsing these truths, especially when I was in another tirade at myself and making scathing judgments like, “You are so stupid,” “You are so ugly,” “You can’t do anything right,” “Nobody likes you.” It takes effort to change destructive habits, so don’t be disheartened when you slip back into an old pattern. Extend grace and mercy to yourself . . . God does. Then begin again choosing life.
My mental health recovery started with a yes to God and to myself. The Lord invites us to be a part of our recovery. So don’t sit and wait for God to fix you; instead, get up and say yes to the Lord, to the new day, and to yourself.
Does that sound too simple? Too Pollyanna? Too rah, rah, shish koom bah? Trust me, I know how hard it is to change a lifestyle, a mind-set, and a belief system, because I have been in process for almost fifty years. I’ve never worked harder, and I’m still not done. No one is. None of us outgrows our need for assistance. I understand the toil and time involved in the tempering of a heart and the transforming of a mind, and I can say with a resounding yes! That it’s worth the effort. Saying yes to Jesus was the path that led me to personal dignity, integrity, and to believing I had a God-given destiny.
By the way, set attainable goals so you don’t position yourself to fail. Don’t sabotage your own progress. Be sure to congratulate yourself for even small steps in the right direction. Be a cheerleader for yourself and others. This will take practice.
Yes is a radical word . . . . So be rad and go yes your world!
An original Women of Faith speaker, Patsy Clairmont combines a quick and depth of biblical knowledge in a powerful, pint-sized package. A recovering agoraphobic with a pronounced funny bone, Patsy speaks to women from all walks of life. Patsy and her husband, Les, live in Tennessee. Take a little stroll with Patsy Clairmont through Twirl, and allow her unique perspective and deep well of biblical wisdom to realign your spin on life.
Excerpted from Twirl ©2013 Patsy Clairmont (Thomas Nelson). Used by permission.