Saying Yes to What is Best.. (And a BIG Announcement)

The Best Yes

A couple of days ago, I was super excited to receive in the mail an advanced reader’s copy of my friend Lysa Terkeurst’s new book, “The Best Yes.”  And while I can’t wait to finish the whole book, the title struck me immediately and I put a sticker from the box that says “Is this my best yes?” directly onto the back of my phone.  Because let’s be honest….if one of my babes is tugging at my shirt needing snuggles and some time with me, I often need to put the phone down with all of its apps and emails and social media pulls.  It is just not my best yes.

But it’s not only our phones that beg that question of us either.  It’s our time, our relationships, and our commitments that can force us into not being able to give our best yesses to the people or things that deserve them.  In her book, Lysa says “The decisions you make determine the schedule you keep.  The schedule you keep determines the life you live.  And how you live your life determines how you spend your soul.”  Annie Dillard puts it this way, “How we spend our days, is of course, how we spend our lives.”


I don’t know about you, but I don’t want to live stressed and overwhelmed with an underwhelmed soul…and I don’t want the people I love to live like that either.  I want to spend my days in ways that testify to a life well lived.  But, if we can’t say the hard “no’s” sometimes, then we need to know that can also prevent us from the capacity to give our best yes.

So when my dear friend Ann Voskamp wrote me very recently and said that as much as she adores and cherishes Allume, for this time in their family, it just isn’t their best yes, I blessed her with all the blessings of our entire community and told her we need the examples of more women being willing to say the hard “No”, so that they can walk in the best “Yes”.  What this means for us is that we will sadly not have the pleasure of hosting sweet Ann for what would have been her 5th Allume.  But… what it means also is that we support one of our sisters in releasing her to being able to follow the Lord in obedience to say her best “Yes” in the place that needs it most.

And while no one would dare to say that any one of God’s children is replaceable (and certainly we all agree that Ann is one-of-a-kind), we do have the pleasure of bringing someone new into our community to keynote at Allume this fall.  Because don’t you know that the Lord loves to give his children good gifts, and those good gifts DO extend to the opportunities we have to hear his own speak and honor him?!

In one week I received separate messages from an old high school friend, Anna, who is a fabulously talented makeup artist in LA, and my dear friend and literary agent, Don Jacobson, both telling me that I just had to meet their friend Sarah Dubbeldam.  Don has known Sarah for years as a friend of his daughter, and Anna is the beauty editor for the stunningly gorgeous magazine that Sarah is the editor-in-chief of called Darling.  Sarah and I finally got to connect, and all the while I’ve continued praying that the Lord would make clear his plans for Allume this year.  After Sarah and I got off the phone, we both just knew that there was something special that the Lord was doing, but neither of us knew quite what it was.

So here we are now.  Our Ann gets to give her best yes to her family… paving the way for Sarah to give her best yes to us!

Friends, get super excited because you’re in for a treat this fall when we have the pleasure of presenting to you our friend, Sarah Dubbeldam.


Sarah Dubbeldam is the founder and Editor in Chief of Darling Magazine, an artistic quarterly publication that seeks to broaden the “ideals” of beauty in media and speak real, time-tested wisdom to women. Now recognized across the nation in over 100 retailers such as Whole Foods, Nordstrom and Anthropologie, the magazine is broadening into a social media movement with it’s “no Photoshop” policy and call for women to know their true worth. Sarah and her team are most excited about Darling’s recent partnership with International Justice Mission to help eradicate sex trafficking in South America. Sarah lives with her husband Steve, the CEO of Darling, in Los Angeles, California.

Connect with Sarah on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram, and make sure too to check out Darling!  Get ready to swoon friends…it’s stunningly beautiful and fully encouraging!

*And while we’re talking about it, What do you need to say no to, in order to give your best yes? We’d love for you to share in the comments below.  (Make sure to check out Lysa’s book, “The Best Yes” available HERE! and enjoy “The Best Yes” blog tour coming soon too!)

  • LeeAnn Taylor

    I love the “best yes” concept and can’t wait to attend Lysa’s book launch in a couple of weeks. Right now I’m praying through a few side-job employment opportunities to determine which is my “best yes.” It’s definitely hard to say “no” when all the options seem good. This concept is coming to me just at the right time!

  • Amy Tilson

    Hard “nos” generally aren’t the most pleasant to experience – on either side – but can lead to unimagined blessings for everyone. I think that is the case here. Welcome, Sarah, to the Allume family. Ann, blessings on your family throughout this season.

  • futureflyingsaucers

    I have been going through a similar experience with “yes’s” and “no’s”. While it is hard to decide, I know my Lord has a best “Yes” for my family and me. And the sweet fellowship with Jesus is wonderful as He walks and talks with me through these months of change.

  • Laurel Shaler

    This summer, I had to say “no” to something I had already said “yes” to. It was so tough because I know that God wants me to honor my commitments, but he also revealed to me (partially through illness) that I cannot do everything. After much prayer and editing of the resignation letter, I sent it off fearful of a negative reply. Praise the Lord the reply was gracious. I was reminded that God’s “got me” and I don’t have to fear. It also reminded me that I need to be very careful with what I say “yes” to!

  • Holly Solomon Barrett

    I’m looking forward to this book and to Lysa’s book launch too! This is a concept God is really teaching me in this season and I’m sensing that He has more to say. :-) It is such an encouragement to see Ann saying her best yes, even if it means saying no to all the goodness of Allume. We will miss her! But how exciting to see Sarah saying yes!! Love the concept of her magazine and will definitely be checking that out. Can’t wait to meet her in October.

  • MotheringFromScratch

    I can’t wait to hear her keynote! She sounds amazing.

  • Brooke McGlothlin

    Ann, thank you for faithfully following Jesus, and inspiring the rest of us to do the same. We love you and will miss you, but are thrilled that you’re where you need to be!

    Sarah, welcome to the tribe :)

  • Melanie Dale

    As always, Allume and the women who are part of it are making wise choices filled with integrity and chasing Jesus with all their hearts!

  • Natalie Snapp

    I ALWAYS applaud when women step in and say “I can’t do it all!” Yay for Ann! Excited to meet Sarah.

  • Mary Bonner

    I have often said, “when I say “yes” to one thing, I am saying “no” to something else.” Thank you to Ann for doing the right thing. Her act of obedience will encourage others to do follow in her footsteps. Welcome to Sarah!

  • AnnVoskamp_HolyExperience

    ( just … I will miss you all more than you can possibly know, beautiful people.
    And there is never a missing out when you don’t miss your best yes.
    Home & here right now is quietly my beautiful yes.
    Grace & peace & warmest welcome to Sarah… )

    • Denise J. Hughes

      Ann, thank you for all the years you have faithfully come to Allume to share your heart. You have blessed so many. And we are thankful. We count you among our gifts. I pray this season is a beautiful time of sweet rest and quiet abundance. A best yes indeed.

    • Lynn D. Morrissey

      Oh Ann, what a beautiful and brave decision you have made not to miss an irreplaceable opportunity to minister to your husband and to your children. It’s so difficult, because it’s obvious how much you love these precious women, love their companionship, and love giving away your gifts to serve them (and you’ve apparently done this since the inception of Allume/Relevant). And I recall reading recently (perhaps on your blog?) about how you said yes to home and a gracious no to Italy. I said some noes early in my writing and speaking (and also in another career) to be able to say yes to God in spending far more time in raising our daughter, Sheridan. She’s now twenty-two, and she is a beautiful fulfillment of God’s yes to me as a mother—she is my gift and reward. Only God knows in what ways He will use you and your gifts to shape your children’s lives and women’s lives, and I know that they will be significant. Surely, His gifts and calling to you are irrevocable. So obviously you will continue to write and speak in glorious ways. It’s just that sometimes He calls upon us to use our gifts in different ways in different seasons. Your saying that beautiful Yes to Him paves the way for Him to use you in whatever ways please and glorify Him. Sometimes I have thought about God as my Conductor (well, actually, He is my Composer and Audience, as well. He is, of course, my *everything*)! Sometimes my Conductor has given me a score with a series of “rests” in it. As I have learned to follow the score He has composed for me and to follow His lead as He conducts my life, I have discovered when to rest and to come in on cue—to sing whatever notes He has given me. I’ve tried to say Yes to my conductor. I have hardly done this perfectly, and sometimes I have balked. But when I have been obedient, I have experienced the sweet melodies of peace and harmony. And another curious thing: I have realized that when I observe the “rests,” the glorious music never ceases, because my Conductor keeps “beating the beat pattern.” He never stops, so the music resounds despite that I am resting. But after the rest . . . after the rest . . . comes the dramatic musical climax (think Hallelujah Chorus! :-) I love this quote by famous pianist Artur Schabel: “The notes I handle no better than many pianists. But the pauses between the notes—ah, that is where the art resides.” With this little Allume-pause in your score, Ann, may the Lord assure you of His loving presence, His abiding pleasure in your Yes to Him, and His absolute assurance that you are, indeed, making art, art of the most exquisite kind. I stand on tiptoe to see what He is doing in your life, because I just know that you will write about it!! :-) God bless you!


    • Logan Wolfram

      Sweet friend… You know we are all cheering for you always.. Wherever The Lord takes you or keeps you! Supporting your yes to Him wholeheartedly!

  • jennieallen

    Ann you lead well and beautifully with your obedience. Love you sister. And Sarah is so brilliantly warm and will bless everyone’s socks off. Love you Logan and Allume girls.

    • Logan Wolfram

      Love you Jennie!! And I didn’t realize that you knew Sarah too! She is such a dear! And yes… Ann…her obedience and faithfulness is such an encouragement to all whether she is here or there! I’m always rooting for you gals!

  • Denise J. Hughes

    Logan, thank you for the way you prayerfully lead. I deeply appreciate the grace you extend to allow others to say their “best yes.” This is the body of Christ. Humbly serving. And trusting the Father’s hand as He guides us onto paths unknown.

  • soulstops

    Cheering for Ann for doing what is best for her family and I hope she inspires others to do the same…and Welcome to Sarah….and Logan, I appreciate the reminder that I am doing a good thing when I say the hard “no” so I can say a better “yes.”…Blessings to you :)

    • Logan Wolfram

      thank you so much for the encouragement! I think we all need to remember from time to time that if we are walking in obedience, our “no’s” will always pave ways to a better “yes”

  • layla bb solms

    Hooray to ann! Howdy to Sarah – I’m new to this arena – only recently discovered @allume – thrilled for what’s next.

  • Kim Hyland

    I love it when grace marks a community. Ann’s courage to say “no” to Allume, and Allume’s courage to say “yes” and support Ann are a beautiful example to all of us. And I love Darling and all they stand for. How exciting!

  • Mindy

    I celebrate with Ann for placing her family as highest priority, yet my selfish heart is sad since I was hoping to grow under her – this is my first Allume. May God bless you Ann as you listen to Him and continue to encourage so many. Now, Sarah’s message about women knowing their true worth resonates deep within my soul… Integrity in our whole being comes from knowing our value in the King of kings. God is moving – I am grateful for what He is doing and for women who listen to Him. Amen

  • Back To The Book Nutrition

    Yes, Yes, and a huge Thank You to Ann for setting the example of “No” in a world of too many obligatory, fearful, fretful yeses!! This will be my first Allume conference, so I admit I was looking forward to seeing and hearing God’s words through Ann in person; but, as a fairly new blogger and mom to young children, I’m grateful for her example of choosing “the best yes.” I’m certain God will bless her for it, and confident he will make Allume just as powerful for the rest of us feeling her absence!

  • Kim Fernando

    This book and this post couldn’t have come at a better time! God has been laying this concept of the best yes on my heart so much lately, so I can’t wait to read her words and dig into it.

    Ann, thanks for modeling what a hard and necessary yes can look like with such grace and humility!

    Sarah, can’t wait to get to know you (and so excited to have discovered Darling Magazine!)