Yes or No?

Article by Malcolm Marler, Edited by Dee DeWitt


I want to say “yes” to people.  I want to be liked.  I want to be the person others come to when he or she needs my time, my skills, or my resources.


And yet if my compass is simply to be liked by others and say “Yes” to them, I’m in big trouble…


I’ll lose my way.  I will look up one day and say, “Who am I?  What do I love to do?  Where is my passion”?


Each “Yes” I commit to means a “No” to something else.  I can only do so many things.  Each “No” I say makes room for the possibility for a new “Yes.”


I’m trying to live more simply in 2010.


I am learning that living simply requires me to make one of two choices.  “Yes” or “No.”  Over and over again … every day.


My prayer is that I will choose wisely.




“We need to teach the next generation of children from day one that they are responsible for their lives.  Mankind’s greatest gift, also its greatest curse, is that we have free choice.  We can make our choices built from love or from fear.”

-Elisabeth Kubler-Ross


Malcolm Marler is Director of Pastoral Care for UAB Hospital in Birmingham, AL.  In addition to his interest in spirituality and health, he loves to identify physical, emotional, and spiritual needs of persons, then design and build programs that help meet those needs.  His warmth and humor along with his powerful message of hope and grace is his greatest strength.  Malcolm grew up in Alabama and attended Clemson University (S.C.) on a football scholarship as a defensive back where he graduated with a B.A. degree in Psychology.  He is a graduate of The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in Louisville, KY with Master of Divinity and Doctor of Ministry degrees.  Malcolm lives on a lake in North Alabama with the love of his life, Mary Bea Sullivan.  He has two open-hearted, loving stepchildren, Brendan and Kiki who are both freshman in college.  For more information or to contact Malcolm, please visit


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Posted on 18 January, 2010 in Balance, Simplify
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