When No is the Will of God

Scripture:  II Corinthians 12:1-10 - It is doubtless not profitable for me to boast. I will come to visions and revelations of the Lord: 2 I know a man in Christ who fourteen years ago—whether in the body I do not know, or whether out of the body I do not know, God knows—such a one was caught up to the third heaven. 3 And I know such a man—whether in the body or out of the body I do not know, God knows— 4 how he was caught up into Paradise and heard inexpressible words, which it is not lawful for a man to utter. 5 Of such a one I will boast; yet of myself I will not boast, except in my infirmities. 6 For though I might desire to boast, I will not be a fool; for I will speak the truth. But I refrain, lest anyone should think of me above what he sees me to be or hears from me.7 And lest I should be exalted above measure by the abundance of the revelations, a thorn in the flesh was given to me, a messenger of Satan to buffet me, lest I be exalted above measure. 8 Concerning this thing I pleaded with the Lord three times that it might depart from me. 9 And He said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for My strength is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore, most gladly I will rather boast in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me. 10 Therefore I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in needs, in persecutions, in distresses, for Christ’s sake. For when I am weak, then I am strong.

One of the major challenges of our growth in our relationship with God is remaining
faithful when God says “No” to our prayers and our desires.  “NO” is always a possible answer
from God, but acceptance, attitude adjustment, and refocusing at times is a challenge to  our
faith.  God’s timing and God’s answers are always consistent with His sovereign purposes
that are designed to bring Him the highest glory, and that may at times result in a “NO” to
our limited understanding of His higher purposes.  He says to us through Isaiah the
prophet, “My ways are not your ways and My thought s are not your thoughts.  As high as
the heavens are above the earth, so are My ways and My thoughts above your ways and
 above your thoughts” (Isaiah 55:8,9).

Many of God’s faithful servants have had to face God’s “No’s”, even when their motives
seemed right to them.  Abraham was told “No” that Ishmael will not be the son of promise.
Moses was told “No” you will not go into the Promised Land.  David was told “No” you will not
 build Me a temple.  In our present devotional text, the Apostle Paul was told “No” by God
without God speaking the specific word “No”. We must learn that God’s “No’s” are not matters
of simple denials of our desires, but they are His re-directions into His better plan for doing
what He has determined is best in the larger picture of His will.

 Our devotional text before us teaches us that repetition of our prayer requests does not
always guarantee that God will change His mind or grant our requests, but will in His time
and in His way give us the answer that is best for our spiritual growth.  God’s “No” was His
way of teaching the Apostle more about the necessary lesson that we all need to rest upon,
and that is God’s grace is sufficient to sustain us through any matter we face in life.  God’s
“No” was His way of saying “Yes” to more grace,  “Yes” to the availability of grace,  “Yes” to the reliability of grace.  It was a “No” that opened the Apostle to a deeper awareness of how God
planned to be more specifically involved in his future.  God’s “No” is for most of us the only way we will learn to live in humble dependence upon the sustaining supply of God in the face of
 certain adversity.
God’s “No” makes us change our minds as to how we see ourselves, our circumstances
and our God.  He is our great keeper, sustainer, protector and encourager -- so believe it and
 live like you believe it.

Prayer:  Father, thank You for reminding me that even when Satan is wreaking some form
of havoc in my world, You can sustain me to continue to live in the victory of obedience to
Your will.  Forgive me for doubting You and succumbing to negative and defeatist thinking
that gives the Devil more power than he has in this life that You have called me to live.
Your promise of sufficient grace reminds me of Your promise and commitment to meet me
where I am in my time of challenge, in Jesus Name, Amen.

(by Pastor Wayne Cockrell)


Brother Brockington - August 8th, 2020 at 5:41am

Blessings pastor, for the message. His 'No' is an invitation to a different expression of His grace, and always is by intent for a greater good. Amen!

Marsha - August 8th, 2020 at 6:08am


Michael Caldwell - August 8th, 2020 at 6:21am

Thanks be to GOD JESUS for his MIGHTY WISDOM AND you postor for the WORD, I have received it today!!!

Robert Ford - August 8th, 2020 at 7:18am

Amen Pastor Cockrell, For second Corinthians 12:1-10,Thank you for that blessing in Jesus name amen.

Deborah Whye - August 8th, 2020 at 8:48am

Ouch and thank you Pastor for this convicting devotion.

Debbie M - August 8th, 2020 at 9:17am

AMEN Pastor AMEN .. I ‘m still embracing this personal truth. His no’s are not designed to weaken my Faith, but they are designed to strengthen my Faith, as I continue to walk and trust HIM.

D - August 8th, 2020 at 10:45am

Thanks Pastor Cockrell, Lord ,your grace and strength is sufficient until....

Wendy - August 8th, 2020 at 2:52pm

Amen ! Pastor cockrell Excellent Devotion!! my soul was Bless..

Novella - August 9th, 2020 at 12:16am


Denise D. - August 9th, 2020 at 6:58am

Amen! Amen! Amen, Pastor! All roads in our walk with Jesus return to greater trust.

Pat T - August 9th, 2020 at 7:30am

Amen Pastor! I don't always like it but I'm grateful for the Nos in my life from the Lord.






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