Sometimes one of the shortest words in our language is the toughest word to get out of our mouths. All of us struggle to say “no” when we know we should.

It takes great courage and faith in God to say no to pressure to do wrong. Teenagers can identify with Daniel, the youth who was taken from his homeland and pushed to comply with the Babylonian customs. While all the other refugees caved in, Daniel knew that if he ate the king’s meat, he would violate Jewish law. Maybe the others didn’t take such a small infraction seriously, but Daniel and his three friends did. They said no.

There are other times when we have to say no to things that take us away from our important priorities in life. Men may have to say no to the football game to be there for their children. Women may have to say no to parties and social outings to spend time with their families. Pastors and lay leaders in the church often have to say no to many fun pursuits because the ministry calls them. In Hebrews, we’re called to lay down the “weights” which slow down our Christian growth.

Are you struggling to say no to a sin or an unnecessary commitment? Remember you have a Heavenly Father Who will give you strength. Pray right now and ask Him for help to do what you know is right.

Courage is the strength or choice to begin a change. Determination is the persistence to continue on in that change. – Unknown Author

Devotional by Dr. James A. Scudder