On saying yes


There are days where tears bleed as rain and my soul feels swallowed whole by weakness and pain.

I waft into insubstantial shadow, blurred outline, smudged nothingness.

Missing the usual places of validation where my insecure soul gets fed.

Finding that Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) has come sooner to my world as autumnal weather drifts early into our shores, rendering me a mess of emotions.

Needing to stay still, lay down body, hopes and desires. Surrender and sink into unconditional Love’s embrace.

And as I’ve been alternately surrendering and resisting deep soul rest, I sense God asking me to say yes to so many things.

It’s not easy at all, more like a dying on the inside, a howl of outrage and fear of missing out, anxiety over losing acceptance.

Because who am I if I don’t have a face, a voice, connection and a presence on social media?

Who am I? A woman who feels likes she’s drowning in her own seeming insignificance, apparently.

Nevertheless, I am slowly surrendering my need of people approval and leaning into His alone.

And finally beginning to stop begrudging this season of ceasing, of pulling back, of being an edge dweller.

Because deep inside? This hurting child knows that her Father’s wishes are ones to heed, and she whispers her reply.

Yes to being on the margins of life when I’m too weary to participate.

Yes to having deep dependence on Him day by day.

Yes to finding worth and value, significance and strength in Him alone.

Yes to His timing and His plans, and yes to seeking after His heart rather than any other.

Saying yes

I don’t want to say yes

to being insignificant,

small; I don’t want to let

go of desiring to have it all

In saying yes to less

I’m inviting obscurity

to define me more than

any worldly success

Then I remember how you

laid down your heavenly

crown, came manger-wrapped

as a tiny one who never stopped

being God’s only begotten Son

You chose to stay humble

walk a challenging road

bearing our burdens and

sin’s heavy load, while your path

led you to suffering on a cross

with a willing yes as you bore

humanity’s pain and dross

Now with arms open to

all mankind, you welcome

us into a significant life

marked by surrender and

being small, saying yes

to life’s best yes of all


saying yes PJ pin

Friend, if life or your own thoughts are giving you a hard time too, may I suggest you dive deeper into God’s love for you? Resting in His love is the only place where we can feel safe, protected and truly accepted.

I wasn’t going to write today. Because words haven’t been flowing freely lately and I’ve been way too tired to think straight. Maybe you’re there too? Perhaps you can remember, along with me, that it’s not a permanent place, just a pausing point and breathing space.

But God had other ideas as He planted a few lines of this poem into my mind while I was dreamily drifting. And He gave me the ability and grace to write the rest out of my imperfection and weakness, and also say a heartfelt yes to participating with the lovely five-minute-friday community as they explore the power of ‘Yes’ today. Come join us?

16 thoughts on “On saying yes

  1. This really moves me, Joy. Like you’re speaking my heart. “Needing to stay still, lay down body, hopes and desires. Surrender and sink into unconditional Love’s embrace.” I long to do that and remember the BEST YES OF ALL that turns all our insignificant feelings into significance in Him. Praying you will feel His arms around you, cherishing you, telling you how very significant and special you are to Him! Hugs!

    • Trudy, you and I are such soul sisters who so often seem to long for similar things. May you be enabled to surrender to the best yes of all and feel comforted by our Father’s loving embrace. You are also truly special and significant to Him! Blessings and love. 🙂 Xx

  2. Wow, what a touching post. It reminds me of some of one of my favorite hymn writers, and friend of John Newton (Amazing Grace), William Cowper. He struggled all through his life with depression, but his hymns show a deep love and abiding faith in God. God is still using his work to bless many people, generations later. He wrote, “God Moves in Mysterious Ways”, and “There is a Fountain”. Here is one of his quotes from one of his hymns. I love this quote.

    Oh! for a closer walk with GOD,
    A calm and heav’nly frame;
    A light to shine upon the road
    That leads me to the Lamb!

    May God bless you as you rest in Him

    • It is often those who encounter the darkest of circumstances who emerge with the strongest faith and deepest love for God. I believe it could be because God meets with us powerfully in the dirt and detritus of daily life. He’s not afraid of those places and seeks to rescue His children from their influence and pain. I love the hymn you mentioned and the quote you shared. Thanks for stopping by.

    • Amy, it is humbling to think God would give me the means to touch and bless others in my weakness. I’m glad you could relate to these words. It’s good to see you here! Blessings.

  3. Joy!! I am so thankful you commented and that I read your post. This is where God is leading me as well. To celebrate my smallness, to rejoice in being a “nobody” on Earth and focusing on glorifying Him, instead of lifting myself up.
    By the way, my “oneword” for the year is your name. “Joy”. He has led me on a journey of learning about grace, and now I’m in a season of learning humility.
    I too am affected by SAD every year. I do want to recommend a book for the internal fulfillment if you are interested. I just finished it. It’s called “Fulfilled” by Danise Jurado. It really spoke to my heart. On my list to read is Deidra Riggs “Every Little Thing” and Emily P. Freeman “Simply Tuesday” which both focus on contentment and I think will help me let go of anyone’s approval save His.
    You have encouraged me greatly and your poetry flows so well together. Thank you for writing and for linking and for saying “hi”. God used you today! 😀
    (#72 on the linkup)

    • Hi Tammy. You too, friend?! Thanks for the book recommendations. Danise Jurado’s ‘Fulfilled’ has come to my attention a lot lately. I can see this is one to put on the Wish List! And I absolutely LOVED Emily Freeman’s ‘Simply Tuesday’. I have recently finished reading it on Kindle and seem to have just about every page highlighted! You have inspired and encouraged me greatly too. Please feel free to return, dip into the archives and see if anything else speaks to you. I’d love to see you here again. Blessings and love. 🙂 x

  4. This is raw, messy glory right here, Joy. I can certainly relate to these seasons of obscurity, of un-ceasing, of being an edge-dweller. There is pain and fear and insecurity and wrestling… and then, somewhere in the midst, there is rest and peace that holds us in the sway. Thanks for writing the real. Joining you from FMF.

    • These words:”There is pain and fear and insecurity and wrestling..and then somewhere in the midst, there is rest and peace that holds us in its sway” – oh, Amber, you describe it so well! And God has asked me to keep “writing the real” since I started a blog. It also feels like I can’t write any other way, or I risk being untrue to my calling. Thanks for stopping by. It’s lovely to meet you. Do come again! 🙂 x

  5. Great post Joy 🙂 You are so gifted with words. An “edge-dweller” – I love that phrase and describes so neatly what I have felt for most of my life, though not always in the way you mean at present. Love and prayers to you for this season – that you may experience beauty in it too…xxx

  6. Beautiful piece, Joy. And although I can’t claim to walk your daily hard of pain…this spoke to me too:

    “you welcome

    us into a significant life

    marked by surrender and

    being small, saying yes

    to life’s best yes of all”

    I’m learning that in a different way, but the same lesson and finding so much joy in both the surrender and His yes. Thank you so much for this encouragement.

    • Anna, we all walk our own daily hard, don’t we? It’s written into the DNA of our humanity. Pain, struggle, weakness and suffering are an intrinsic part of life’s journey. And in it all we meet with the One who willingly accompanies us through every fiery trial, each sting of adversity made bearable by His glorious presence and continuous supply of grace. I’m so glad I said a happy yes to God! No matter how it might look right now, there is no better way to live than to be surrendered to Him. Thank you so much for stopping by. I’m glad this piece resonated with you. Bless you, friend! xo

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