It started with tennis elbow back in early February. Mundane, everyday tasks — even drinking a cup of coffee — led to shooting, excruciating pain piercing throughout my arm.
Then in March, the beloved curriculum director in charge of my new Live Full Walk Free project took a nasty fall in the parking lot, and had to take an extended break from work. She’s still out.
Add to the mix a crazy marriage mess, intense family conflict and drama, website woes, a nasty bee sting/allergic reaction, plus hitting a wild turkey with our car while zooming down the highway—2016 has been a year I would like to forget.
Not to mention: Wednesday my email was hacked by someone in Switzerland, and a fake Dropbox attachment was sent to all of my contacts and FB friends. (I’m so sorry if you were on the receiving end. Ugh.)
I’ve even thought to myself, “Maybe ministry is too hard for me? Maybe I should just quit and go work at a coffee shop or something?”
Y’all, I feel a bit like humpty dumpty, except I’ve been pushed off the wall.
Have you ever been there before too, friend?
Whether it’s the demanding work challenge, hard relationship struggle, financial crisis, medical challenges, or worse — I sense many of us have had moments when it feels like our world is falling apart.
I know God will be able to put me back together, but how do I, how do we, hold on to hope in the mean time?
What do we do during the hard seasons when we are tempted to quit and walk away, whether it’s in ministry, marriage, our job, or a relationship?
I don’t have all the answers, but thankfully we know the One Who does. And while the struggles are fresh in my mind, I’ve decided to share 3 lessons I’ve been learning so far.
When You Want to Quit
1. Identify the “root” issue.
- What is the underlying issue that is fueling your desire to quit?
- Is that issue valid?
- Is it worth giving up?
Personally, for me, at the core —my issue is fear. Fear of not being good enough. Fear of being rejected. Fear of being hurt again. Fear of disappointing others. Fear of the spiritual battle.
I’ve had to prayerfully decide if I was going to let fear hold me back from experiencing what God has for me to do. I had a choice to make.
Once I identified the root was fear (and we know fear is not from God), it helped fuel a steadfast determination to keep going. I’ve been asking God daily to replace my fear with His courage. I am choosing to stand firm and walk forward….even if I’m shaking in my sparkly boots. 🙂
2. Ask friends for help
If you are seriously considering giving up, please invite a wise, Truth-telling Christian friend to journey with you. Share how you are really doing.
I’m so thankful to my small group of girlfriends who have come over to pray for me, read Scripture, send me verses and words of hope, and encourage me. Their presence and words of Truth have been that “cup of cold water” I needed. (And their lattes have warmed my heart—thanks, friends.)
Aren’t you thankful God did not intend us to journey alone?!
If you are ready to throw in the towel, who can you call TODAY and ask for help, wisdom and prayer? Please do not stay isolated. Tell someone.
3. Fill your mind with Truth.
Sweet friends, if we are going to experience a victorious life, especially in the midst of our challenging circumstances, we MUST fill our minds with Truth.
Not things that are true, but the TRUTH of who God is and what He says about us.
- It may be true that your feelings have been hurt.
- It may be true that you are taking a risk by charting new territory.
- It may be true that others won’t understand your pain, and may even write you snarky letters.
You get my drift. As Kelly Minter shares in her book, No Other Gods—
“Satan will tell us what’s true, but he never tells us the TRUTH.”
It’s time to take what is true and match it with God’s TRUTH!
- It may be true that your feelings have been hurt….but our God is ABLE to do IMMEASURABLY MORE than we could ever ask or imagine. He will bind up your broken heart, put you back together piece by piece, give you a firm place to stand, and equip and empower you with everything you need.
- It may be true that you are taking a risk by charting new territory…but in Christ you are ACCEPTED, COURAGEOUS, and FAITH-FILLED; you don’t need to worry about what others will think.
- It may be true that others won’t understand, and may even write letters…but your LOVE, WORTH, and VALUE is not based on what others think, but what God thinks – and HE THINKS YOU ARE WONDERFUL!
I once heard someone say, “It’s time we change our “what ifs” to “so what.” I wholeheartedly agree.
- So what if others don’t understand?
- So what if your journey looks different than others?
- So what if others write you snarky letters?
- Did you do what God called you to do?
- Did you serve Him with excellence? (Not perfection, but excellence).
- Did you try your best?
- Did you keep your heart pure?
- Did you seek Him every step of the way?
As Beth Moore says, “We are warriors, not wimps.”
Let’s start believing God for ALL that He has for us and watch Him do amazing things before our very eyes!
I’m not throwing in the towel, and I hope you won’t either.
So I’m curious…when was the last time your world felt like it was falling apart? What helped you keep going? How did you overcome your current challenges? I’d love to hear from you!
Thanks for stopping by *She Sparkles.* God’s richest blessings to you!
P.S. And a huge shout-out to Dan from Fistbump Media for mending my broken online home! Lord willing, my website woes are over. Woo Hoo!