Sunday, June 28, 2009

Quitting is not an option...Are you a Finisher?

By the title of this blog, you know that we are going to talk about quitting or a least NOT quitting. This blog came to me during a night of insomnia. That night I had the whole blog worked out in my head. When I woke up, I could not remember a thing. NOTHING. Two days later, listening to the Bible Experience (a must have by the way) the story of Peter walking on water jolted my memory. We will talk about Peter shortly.

I had been talking to family and friends about my doctoral journey. I said, if I could have seen and anticipated the work, the commitment, and how exhausted I would be at this point I might not have started. Here is a freebie…this is one reason why God does not show us the end or even the middle of a thing at the beginning, because we might not ever start the journey. Although I never said anything about quitting (just venting, you know me) several people immediately said, “You can’t quit”…“you’ve come so far”. Quitting is not an option. In fact, quitting is not in my DNA. However, it did start me to thinking about why people quit particularly when they have asked for and passionately pursued the thing (job, degree, relationship, marriage, and self-improvement) they now want to quit.

When Peter walked on water, it was his request to go to Jesus on the water. He said, “Lord, if it is you, tell me to come to you on the water”. Peter was walking on water! However, when the wind picked up, Peter became afraid and began to sink, asking Jesus to save him from drowning.

We do the same…We ask God to direct us and show us what we should be doing. We ask for guidance in returning to school, starting a ministry, getting married, quitting a bad habit like drinking or smoking, leaving or getting a new job or career, OR _____. You fill in the blank. At the first sign of trouble (the wind picks up) we are ready to throw in the towel, wanting to be rescued, wanting to quit!

We have to decide (choose) to stay the course, particularly the courses that we ask God to set us on and bless. If we trust that He knows best and knows us best then we have to trust the course He put us on and we have to learn (through faith) to persevere.

Conversely, we do have to know when something is over. Quitting implies that we are leaving something half done or undone. If we have unfinished emotional, financial, relational, spiritual “business” with something that we are involved in or someone then it may not be time to leave or let go. We have to seek guidance before we decide the time is right to move on. Then we can move forward without having to look back. Don’t quit and you never have to wonder what if.


}:{ Keda }:{ said...

This is right on time. Thank you.

Unbreakable said...

After reading this blog the blog one question came to mind .Do anyone really ever plan on quitting when they set out to achieve a goal. I really doubt that, as you mention in your piece due to the fact that we cant see the end of event he middle of our journey to achieve what ever we set out to do, its creates the sense of heighten expectation with at times drives us to the end of the road.

On the other hand quitting comes about at time due to the invisibly of the end with a combination of a solution/opportunity that’s seems to be a better options at times.

So then the question ill like to ask is when do you quit? Is quitting always such a bad idea?

AQUA : ) said...

Thanks for the comments. Love it! You are right, most people do not start to quit. However, for "quitters" (pattern of quitting and unfinished business in their wake)quitting is always PLAN B. Plan A is to persevere under the test, trial and in spite of the obstacles (and there will be obstacles). Those obstacles can become stepping stones.

As I said in the last paragraph, we DO need to know when a thing is over. But I do not consider this quitting. Quitting implies unfinished business and abruptly stopping something. We have to make sure that we have done all that WE can, and then we still need to stand and trust God waiting for clear instructions and release to move on. Two examples: In dangerous situations and relationships, I say quit, run don’t walk. If you are in school, taking some classes and things are not going well for whatever reason. Finish the class you are in (don’t quit) and take a semester off to figure out what is going on with you, with a plan and a timeline to return. If you don’t quit and don’t return because you quit, you won’t have to look back 15 years later and say I wish I had finished my degree.

Crystal Monae said...

It's important that we check our motives before starting anything. Sometimes we get ourselves committed to something that God had no part in. We had our own plan and decided to pursue it without consulting with God to see if it was in His will. Whatever that something may be, it will continue to be hard until you abandon it or ask God to enter into. Bottom line, talk to God before you begin anything and then have patience as you wait for His answer.

Aqua said...

Absolutely Crystal! We can't start something that God did not ordain and then begin wondering why we are not progressing in it and then ask Him to bless our mess! :)