I have a radical invitation for you: Be intolerant.
Hold up for a second. To clarify, I’m not talking about being a bigot or letting prejudice run wild.
I’m suggesting that you push back on less than acceptable circumstances. That means you courageously see what isn’t working. You skip the part where you avoid tough choices. Then you utter a firm and healthy, “No!”
In the July series, The Land of No, we’ll talk about how to reject poor conditions, commonly known in New Thought as “divine dissatisfaction”. This is how Catherine Ponder described it:
“I will not put up with or tolerate this experience as necessary, lasting or right. I refuse to accept things as they are. I am God’s child and I will accept nothing but His complete goodness for me.”
CC pulled me aside one day to tell me the big news. She was going to be a great-grandmother!
Congratulations? Surely there was a mix-up. I had met her grandsons years before, but they were in middle school. While I struggled to sort through my confusion, she filled in the blanks.
“Mike called with the news. I was so excited! I mean, I never thought I’d be a great-grandmother.”
“Hmmm…,” I said. “It’s been years since I saw him. What’s he doing now?”
“He’s going to school – he’ll graduate soon. She’s only about three months along, but I couldn’t help myself – I’ve already started looking at baby clothes. And then there’s the shower. Her family will probably host a baby shower, but we want to as well, and…”
CC kept talking baby registries and party plans for the next 10 minutes. Her enthusiasm was undeniable. The trouble was that she was so busy saying yes that she hadn’t thought about all the no’s that were becoming apparent.
Did Mike have a way to support the baby? No. He had his first job at a local grocery store the Summer before, and that was only part-time.
Was Mike ready to make a home with the mother of his child? No. They had only been dating for a few months.
Did Mike have plans for any kind of professional training or college? Not yet.
All those no’s added up, and the results weren’t good. Five years later, Mike and his family are struggling with poverty.
Let’s rewind. What could have happened if CC saw the whole situation, not just what she wanted to see?
Imagine this conversation: “My daughter and I are having dinner with the girl’s parents next week to talk about what comes next. Right now, state aid is their best shot to make ends meet. I love Mike, but I don’t want him to fall into a lifetime of welfare. Everything will work out, it’s just that…these kids need to get serious.”
There’s probably something bothering you right now – we all face hard circumstances. You might feel tempted to go into denial or invent a million and one workarounds. Anything so you don’t have to face hard facts. Instead, get a pushback in your spirit.
Are the overwhelming details in front of you all powerful or permanent?