“Yes” is a powerful word.
Saying “yes” to one thing means saying “no” to others. It sometimes takes commitment, faith and often risk. On occasion, “yes” can be one of the scariest words in the English language – and yet one of the most powerful as well. Especially when it means saying NO to fear.
Yet when your YES, especially in the face of fear, brings about transformation in the life of another person, all the risk-taking and fear-smashing makes everything WORTH WHILE. There is so much power in saying yes to obedience when all you want to do is run away.
Last night, I had the amazing privilege of going out to pray and share Jesus on the busy, Brisbane streets with a group of radical friends. When we first arrived, we were praying together and I opened my eyes to see a woman in a red dress. She was with a friend, smiling and walking along, and I felt the Holy Spirit highlight her to me. Instead of leaving the circle of praying friends to go and talk to her right then and there, I felt fear, and chose to stay in my safe group of praying friends. I allowed fear to dictate to me whether I said yes or no.
After all….we were PRAYING, weren’t we? That’s really important stuff.
(Oh, the justifications we make when fear is involved).
We split up into little groups about 15 minutes later, and I could feel my heart pounding as we began to look around at the busy streets and all the people that we could pray for and share Jesus with. I couldn’t escape the thought of the woman in the red dress, but I had to push in and not allow regret to hold me back. So, I said a silent prayer for her, and chose to jump into whatever the Lord had for us next.
I saw McDonald’s out of the corner of my eye, and felt a pull to go inside. I’m not a huge fast-food person, so I knew that the Lord was calling us to go in and perhaps share Jesus with someone. As myself and my two friends entered into perhaps one of the busiest McDonald’s I have ever seen, I felt overwhelmed. We quickly took a seat and looked around the room – when suddenly I saw her. The woman in the red dress was in McDonald’s!
My heart was fully aware that the Lord had a plan for this lady, and that I was meant to speak to her. My Spirit was alive and ready to go straight over to her and her friend, but the fear was strong. Was I going to obey Him this time? What does my YES look like in the face of fear? I knew the Holy Spirit wasn’t asking me to hand her a tract or share with her one of my fancy evangelism tools. He just wanted to love on her, and let her know that she was seen. I had a fleeting thought that maybe I could just pray a passing prayer over her (from afar) and walk away from it….but I knew that I NEEDED to say yes.
My friends prayed for me as I walked over and interrupted the lady and her friend. As I began to tell her my story – that I had seen her, God highlighted her to me, and that I was actually scared to approach her but I knew that God wanted to pour out His love upon her – she wept. She wept, and wept and wept. Her friend was grinning from ear to ear and shared with me that my red dress woman has just come through the worst season of her life. I asked the woman in the red dress if she knew Jesus, and her response made my risky, fearful YES turn to glory before my eyes. She said that she was far from Jesus, but because of our conversation she was ready to come home.
And at 7:51pm on Saturday night at a busy, Brisbane McDonald’s… I prayed with the woman in the red dress to come home to Jesus.
Heaven rejoices, and we give Him glory!
In a world where everyone tries to focus on self and justify saying “no” to the hard things, there is so much power in saying “yes” to the voice of the Father. Usually, fear is the first indicator that God wants to move powerfully. He has not given us a spirit of fear (but of power, love and a sound mind), so the fear is the very thing that wants to hold a person back from the power, the love and a sound mind.
Your YES is powerful, especially in the face of fear.
I encourage you to find your “woman in the red dress” and say YES. It will impact eternity, and it will definitely impact YOU.
— Mandy Woodhouse