Mark 11:3

Polite Refusal



“If anyone says to you, ‘Why are you doing this?’ . . .” Mark 11:3



The owner of the colt responded positively to Jesus’ request. There was something about it that held persuasive power. After all, if Jesus, who is the Lord, had need of his colt the owner would gladly give it as matter of priority.


This should be our response to God’s need of anything we have. We have so many talents, abilities and resources to which can be said, “The Lord has need of it.” The colt is common, unassuming. We mistakenly believe He wants some big sacrifice when, what He wants are the things we take for granted; that area where there’s a struggle to surrender.


The Lord can leverage the most unlikely area of our life. Our skills can be put to use in His kingdom. Our individuality and likableness can be instruments to carry His truth to others. Our feet can carry out His mission to minister to others. Our hands are useful in serving and lifting off the burdens of others. When the Lord lays claim to the contents of our life, it should be without question, and gladly we say, “Yes! Lord, it’s all Yours.”


If the man who owned the colt had treated the disciples who came for it as we treat God’s call, the conversation might have sounded like this:


“Hey, what are you doing with my colt!?”

“The Lord has need of it.”

“What do I care! I need it for myself, leave it alone! Get out of here now.”


That’s rough language. We would never put our polite refusals of God’s demands so bluntly. 


  • God needs our time – “Sorry my schedule is full. Anyway, it’s my time.”


  • God needs our strength – “Hey, sorry I can’t take on one more thing, I’m already exhausted and tired. I don’t have the margin for anything else.”


  • God needs our mind – “Sorry, I have my own problems to think about. I have too much to focus on right now.”


However we choose to say no to God, even in our polite refusal, there’s no mistaking the presence of the spirit of resistance. 



What kind of priority does God get with us? What does God have need of in your life?