I had a breakfast meeting with colleagues this morning and we started our conversation talking about saying no to good things. Does it seem strange to say no to something good? Yes, but consider this: if you have a pie filled with slices of good, there's no room for great when it comes along.
I'm reminded of a Rob Bell video called "Shells." A family is collecting beautiful shells on the beach and the little boy has his little hands overstuffed with precious shells that he's hand selected from the deposits made by last night's tide. And then two feet into the water he sees a starfish! His dad encourages him to run into the water to get the starfish and the little boy is VERY excited. He runs in and then he comes running back and his dad encourages him again. He does this three times and dad says "Why can't you get the starfish?! That's YOUR starfish!" and the little boy screams, "Because my hands are filled with shells!!!!"
And so I consider, when has all the good stuff in life prevented me from leaving room for great stuff? Because "great" takes time and space to create. We need to dream it, to consider it, to reflect on it, and to wait for it, and to see it when it comes along. And if we're running so fast with and for the good stuff, we may just run right by the great stuff.
So, what "good" do you need to say no to so that you can be "great?"