When God says, “No.” (Part 1)

attention-road-sign-sign-39080A few years ago I began writing a novel. A children’s book. It was called The Light Rangers and it was about a family of children who were the last of the Light Rangers left in the universe. They were the remnant, their parents were lost and it was up to the children to save the known world using only the power of the Light.

I loved writing it. I was having so much fun. And then one day in the middle of my prayer on the beach, God said, “STOP! Stop writing the book.” I was so devastated. I almost burst into tears, but instead I asked, “Why?”

And God said, “Because it is not honouring to me, and it is not helping your family.”

Ouch. Big Ouch because I had thought it was, both those things. I thought it honoured God and I thought my kids would love to read it, I thought my husband would benefit from having a thriving creative wife, doing something she loved.

So I asked, a little frightened of the answer, “What will I do instead?”

And God said, “You will write songs. Songs of thanksgiving, songs of praise songs of joy and songs of hope.”

A little surprising, due to the fact that I don’t write music, I wasn’t really sure how that would actually happen but what I really wanted to know was, “Will I ever finish the book?”


So final.

Has God ever said, “No” like that to you? It’s so final.

Anyway I did it, I put the book aside and I began to write songs. The amazing thing is that God even provided the music, completely original tunes, and I began to sing them. They became my worship. I’d sing at the sink, at the clothesline, I’d sing everywhere, songs of thanksgiving, songs of praise, songs of joy and songs of hope.

Writing your own songs with God is something I would recommend. Songs just for worship, for no other purpose; not for material gain or even the ears of others, just for the Lord. It is a wonderful thing to do.

I want to share the first song I wrote with you though, because it describes what it was like to take this particular step of obedience. What it felt like to stop writing the book, forever, and begin writing songs of thanksgiving, praise, hope and joy. It describes what it feels like when God says, “No” and we know we must obey, against all our feelings. It also shows the way out of those feelings.

Do you know what the way out is? Do you know the way out of your pity party?

I’ll tell you. It is through songs of thanksgiving, songs of praise, songs of joy and songs of hope!

I wrote a post called What To Do When We’re Anxious recently. In it I outlined what steps we are to take to pray our way out of our anxiety. I looked at Philippians 4:6-10. Check it out, it is a great way to pray through our worries and problems.

But, what I didn’t say in that post is what comes just before, in Philippians 4:4-5.

Philippians 4:4-5 says,

Rejoice in the LORD always. I will say it again: Rejoice! Let your gentleness be evident to all. The LORD is near.

The reason this comes first is that the rejoicing, the singing that comes with obedience out of our spirit, especially when we don’t feel like singing, does something to our soul, it softens us towards God. We go gently to him in song.  There is something about music and singing that will not let us stay hard, and as we go gently, lose the tough outer shell we feel him, near us. The physical presence of the Lord.

Be encouraged today if God has said, “No” to you, Sing! Let him put a new song in your heart. Here is a link to the song in Part 2 of this post.

SocialPost_15675756_facebookLots of love,


P.S. If you click on the tag “Original Songs” you can look at the lyrics for other songs I’ve written and be encouraged by them also.

© Lauren Macdonald. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission, from this blog’s author, is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Lauren Macdonald @ http://godhelpmei.com

13 Comments Add yours

  1. Vivian says:

    I am looking but can’t find the tag to your song.


    1. Lauren Macdonald says:

      I’ll post the song and add a link tomorrow to this post, but for now if you want to see other song lyrics, go to “Original Songs” in the “tags” widget on the side bar. It’s right after “Original Poetry”. That means it’s probably alphabetical. Thanks for reading, Hope you are well today. Lots of love, L.


      1. Vivian says:

        Okay, I’ll try that. Thanks sweetie! How’s your boy?


      2. Lauren Macdonald says:

        He’s ok, we go back tomorrow. I’ll e-mail you with an update after that. Thanks Viv. Hope alls well at your place. L

        Liked by 1 person

      3. Vivian says:

        Okay. I’ve been concerned but in prayer a lot for you and your precious family. I’m okay, not great but managing to fight my battles one day at a time by God’s Grace. I wrote an article on Grace that Cindy tagged me in and I tagged you and two others but please don’t feel pressured at all because I understand how busy you are and it took me weeks to complete my post due to publish next Monday. Much love Lauren. Yes, email….awesome.😍

        Liked by 1 person

      4. Lauren Macdonald says:

        Oh thanks, that’s very kind, I’ll check it out and Cindy’s too. L

        Liked by 1 person

      5. Lauren Macdonald says:

        ….And prayer coming your way.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Billie Abbott says:

    It touched me, jumped out at me, “Sing to the Lord a New Song”…… I would like to share with you a song I have loved for so many years….. not from the Bible, but from Bernstein. “God is the Simplest of All”… it starts with
    “Sing God a Simple Song”….. here is the link, I hope you feel this, too, Lauren. I play this so often when I need
    to feel the Divine within….. when I am down in the depths….. yes, for me song and praise is the way I can be
    close to Spirit….. Love Billie

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Lauren Macdonald says:

      I loved it Billie, what a beautiful song, a song we can all sing. I loved it all the more because Leonard Cohen was very special to my Dad’d faith. At my Dad’s funeral we played a recording of my Dad singing, Leonard Cohen’s ‘If It Be Your Will’.
      Your comment also reminded me of a time when I asked God what to say to my Dad, once when he was very unwell, and in tortuous pain. His faith was small and he was frightened at the time. God said to me, “Sing Bridge over Troubled Water, by Simon and Garfunkel to him and tell him it’s from me.” I had to google the lyrics and when I sang it we both cried our eyes out, but afterwards we prayed a simple prayer and I left the Isolation ward where he was sleeping. Dad told me afterwards that, the moment the door clicked closed, every bit of his pain left him, except the pain in his hand from the canula. Then a young man entered the ward, dressed as a nurse, took out the canula and changed it. He signed the newly installed canula with a J made out of medical tape. Then he left. Afterwards, Dad told the medical staff that the guy had done a wonderful job and he had no longer had pain anywhere. The staff told him that there were no male nurses on the ward, he had to be mistaken.
      I’m praying for your pain to go today Billie. Sing with me. Much love L.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Billie Abbott says:

        Lauren, what a beautiful and sad time in your life to share with me, thank you…. it seems you have angels in your life that you can see. So precious that you could sing to your Dad at that time, and the pain went from
        his body. How blessed to have such a daughter, and how blessed to have such a father. (One who could sing
        Leonard Cohen songs) It made me cry because, strangely, when my Daddy was dying, in a coma, but I knew he could hear me, there was a radio in the ward, and it played “Bridge Over Troubled Waters”, and my sister and I cried, and then it played, so unusually, “Abide with Me”, that was in 1978. He died with us, and it was then
        I knew about spirit passing from the body… I could “see” that. That day, after I arranged the funeral, I was with my Mum, and I had tickets for Bowie, his first concert. She said go, others were there for her. I went, and I can say that the whole day from start to finish was full of miracles and music. I thank you for your prayers, Lauren, my heart will try and sing with you. This has comforted me. Love, Billie

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Lauren Macdonald says:

        I cried reading this too. A song to comfort your Dad and a song to comfort his family. What a beautiful Lord, he meets us where we are. He leaves the 99 to gather the one. Thank you for sharing this, you’ve blessed and encouraged me. Miracles and Music! Bless you. Lots of love, L.


  3. Pure Glory says:

    Lauren, it can be hard when God says, “No.” I’m so glad that you shelved the book and followed the Lord. He has been teaching me that anything we do without the Lord is idolatry and pride. Ouch! How fun to compose and sings songs to the Lord. It is sure to bring his presence! Blessings!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Lauren Macdonald says:

      It is a shock when we discover we’ve been living in idolatry and pride and calling it God’s Will. Yep, Big Ouch. I can see it all now but at the time it was such a hard word to obey. Thankfully God does things for our good, and like you say our song brings his presence. I think our whole life needs to be a song. I wonder what my anti musical theatre husband would think about that? Haha.
      I was writing songs yesterday with a friend and afterwards my kids were having an argumentative afternoon. To go from one sound to the other was like going through the cheese grater. I imagine that must be why God loves our song because he lives in song, when we are singing and our life is positive and beautiful and encouraging we are in harmony with him. When we argue and complain negatively, angrily and noisily we are at odds with the music of life itself. Lots of love today, sing, sing, sing!! L.

      Liked by 1 person

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