MUSE: NO IS NASTY

My little nephew wanted to play with my daughter’s Ben 10 wrist watch but she said no. My little nephew started to cry and so I asked my daughter, who is three years older and “ought to understand” that big children make sacrifices for smaller ones, to fetch her watch and give it to him. But she still said no. I got angry and ordered her to give it to him. Her answer was still no. I got angrier and spanked her and this time her attitude spoke louder than her words; NO! I forced the watch out of her hand but couldn’t give it to my nephew because the whole situation had become such a mess, my daughter was wailing and her cousin was in a howling rage.

Several hours later, I was still angry at my daughter for disobeying me. I remained angry until questions that challenged the self righteous indignation I was feeling began to pour into my mind.

Why should you be angry at her because she refused to do what you want?

Why not?

She has a will.

Oh.

Yes is pleasant, no is not. But life is made up of the pleasant and the unpleasant. If we look around we will see that not everything God created is a pleasant creature by nature. And not every experience we have in our walk with God is a pleasant one. In fact anyone who cannot endure the unpleasant cannot walk with God.

The Ben 10 watch was my daughter’s property, she had rights over it. If my nephew wanted it, he would have to ask, which he did. Asking nicely doesn’t guarantee that someone will receive, and that my nephew had to learn the hard way. He didn’t take it well. But seriously, how many people take a refusal well, Child or adult? Many of us will throw a tantrum, in our own kind of way.

When you get a no; a stubborn, nasty, persistent no, it is better to respect it than to throw a tantrum. It does not mean that one has accepted defeat but that the free will of the other person is acknowledged and respected. This other party is more likely to withdraw the no and offer a yes because of that gesture. But when you get angry and insist that someone must kill his or her free will to make room for yours, the person is most likely to get ready to go to war and die a hero.

Yours truly,

Moni.