Let Your Yes Be Yes

One of the things I do is make travel arrangements for groups going to Ghana, West Africa. In the fall I hired a company, Tour Monde, http://www.tour-monde.com/quote/en/index_one_way.php,to meet a group at Dulles Airport and transport them to Berea, Kentucky. On the day of the trip, after already having been paid, the salesperson, David, called to tell me that they had underbid the trip and would not do it. They would, he said, refund my money and cancel the contract. Any attempts to talk to him about how unethical this action was fell on deaf ears. They simply did not care. They wanted an additional $1750 or they would not live up to the terms of their contract. As I talked to David, I felt anger and frustration mount. They did not care that I had 27 people on their way to the airport. I began to pray for peace, for God’s favor and intervention.

I had an estimate from another company who was willing, on extremely short notice, to take the trip. It still cost more than I had originally budgeted but the difference between the companies was marked! This company, Beverly Tours, out of the Washington, DC area, was an answer to my prayers. I was able to call Tour Monde and tell them to refund my money. At the same time, I was greatly disturbed. It’s not just a matter of bad business for a company who obviously had not done due diligence prior to giving a quote to dishonor their contract. It speaks clearly about their lack of integrity. And as God does, God began to speak. Matthew 5:37 says ‘simply let your ‘yes’ be ‘yes,’ and your ‘no,’ ‘no’; anything beyond this comes from the evil one.

We live in a world where yes means maybe! As people of God we cannot follow the patterns of this world. While it is my prayer that my clients will cover the difference I had to pay to get the bus, if they don’t, I have to believe that God will honor me and provide the funds in another way. As a professor, minister, mother, wife, friend, my ‘yes’ has to mean yes. It’s not always convenient to honor your commitments. Doing what we say we will do is going to cost us something. But in the end, isn’t it better to pay the cost and be blessed than it is to go back on our word and have our witness damaged?

Today, as you go about your work or play, let your yes be yes. Anything less than that comes from the evil one.

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So Long To Our Furry Friend

On Friday morning we awoke to find that our beloved friend and pet, Gretta, had died in her sleep. Gretta was our dog of nearly ten years and not a truer friend could one find. Yet, though our heart breaks at her absence we see God’s hand. Gretta was the kind of pet that we needed. She was patient, waiting for a busy family to come home. She let us know how much she missed us when we were away. When I’d take business trips she would wag her tail and give a bit of a cry when I returned. I felt her love – even during those times when I didn’t feel very lovely or loving. When Gretta became sick we decided that we would not try to prolong her life if it meant diminished quality. So God, in God’s loving way, simply let her drift off to sleep. The decision was made. And though our hearts ache, we know that having to make a decision would have been even harder. God is a burden-bearer and I am grateful that the burden of a difficult decision was born by God and not our family.

Some may wonder why the loss of a pet can be so devastating and think that we are just a bit over the top. And, there are certainly others that would wonder why I had to get “spiritual” about it and bring God into the picture. As a Christian, as a minister, I believe that God cares about anything I care about. The scripture teaches that every good and perfect gift comes from God. Gretta was a good, perfect gift to our family. She helped a teenager through trying teenage years by unwavering love. Her presence brought each of us happiness. When we would have been too busy to stop and just enjoy life, Gretta would remind us by insisting on a walk or a belly rub. In her gentle way, she reminded us that simple touches were necessary. Touching her reminded us to touch each other and to be still long enough to allow God to touch us. That had to make God smile. I thank God for the nearly ten years that this furry face looked into my eyes. I thank God for the many lessons I’ve learned just by having her in our lives.Gretta

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