Never Give Up

| February 20, 2017

Never Give Up

How many New Year’s Resolutions have you kept? How many goals and dreams have fallen by the wayside? We get so excited to make a New Year’s Resolution, and we tell ourselves, “I’m doing it this time!” But, usually by the time February and March roll around, you didn’t lose the pounds you wanted, or you didn’t break the habit. You made a goal, but it faded along with your enthusiasm. Been there.

In my last post, I spoke of my struggles with depression and how I found meaning in my life by discovering my purpose. Hopefully, you’ve made a list, and it’s in front of you. 😉 It’s time to begin the process of finding your purpose.

You’ve marked the things that you think you’d enjoy doing. You’ve done some research to see what all is involved and something you’d enjoy. You’re in the planning stage, and this stage may take a while, but don’t fret. Pour yourself a spot of tea, a cup of coffee, and enjoy the process. You don’t want to walk blindly into something without a plan.

I’ve loved writing since I was a child. I couldn’t wait to come home and write all about my day in my diary. And, for those who love to write, a small page in a diary isn’t nearly long enough to get your thoughts out especially a teenager. So, I’d add pages and stuff them in. My diary began looking like an overstuffed pillow.

Because of the circumstances surrounding my life as an adult, however, I couldn’t seem to get my writing off the ground. It wasn’t that I didn’t try, well, I tried until I got so discouraged that, figuratively speaking, I’d shove my writing back onto that same, dark shelf to collect dust as I vowed to quit. My excuse, which I thought was a good one, was that too many things were against me…nothing ever seemed to go my way… poor me.

So, I’d go about my life but the nagging desire always found a way to inch back into my thoughts. Begrudgingly, I’d pull down my rough drafts and try it again. (They’re all still here in my filing cabinet.)

I was a quitter, but God wasn't done with me yet.This was my writing life cycle. Get encouraged. Quite. Get discouraged. Quit. Later in my life I finally had to face shivering fact that I never wanted to admit.

I was a quitter.

There was no other conclusion I could come to accept I had been a quitter for most of my life, especially when things got too difficult, or when I faced an obstacle that looked impossible to jump over. Just quit. (Thankfully, the only thing I never quit was my Christian walk with Jesus.) The last time “I quit” was actually about two years ago. I packed up all my work-related materials, placed them in a plastic container, snapped on the lid, and shoved it in my closet. I stomped downstairs and told my husband, “I quit. I’m done. And I mean it this time!”

He remained silent and processed my remarks that he’d heard before, and said, “Okay.”

I shot back, “I mean it.”

“Okay.”

Well, I barely made it past two days when I dragged the plastic container out, snapped open the lid, and stared at my writing career like I’d done hundreds of times.  But this time, I wrestled with why I’d been given this desire to write and then have it be so difficult to do. But the story wasn’t over. God had to remind me again of Matthew 6:33 says, “Seek ye first the kingdom of God, and His righteousness, and all these things will be added unto you.”

2 Reasons Why God Didn’t Bless My Gift

  1. I was a quitter. How can anyone work with someone who’s  a quitter? I’d go forward and slide back so many times that I was never able to reach the finish line.
  2. God wasn’t done with me yet. I’d gone through transformations in my life like we all do and this was going to be another long one even though I wanted the short cut. I realized that there were things that had nothing to do with my writing but everything to do with me… heart and discipline issues. Was I even ready for the challenge? Was I ready to take the journey without quitting? How much did I really want it? And this is the question you must ask yourself. How much do you want it? If it’s as much as you think, then you’ll probably quit, too.

God molds us into the person He wants us to become, but He seeks people who don’t quit, people who aren’t afraid to run the race, and who have the courage to work through obstacles to find a way. He wants us to be tough and see it through. We may fail, but it’s better to fail at something you’ve tried, then to fail because you quit.

Never Give Up

I’d discussed my dilemma with a good friend long ago, and she gave me some good advice. She asked me if I could find a half hour a day to write, or even a half hour every other day so that I wouldn’t become burned out in the process before I began.

Never Give UpWell, that sounded achievable, so I began taking her advised baby steps. And what the baby steps taught me was discipline and a stable incentive to accomplish my goals.

Before I knew it, I found myself wanting to find more time to write because I saw my accomplishments taking shape. And with hard work, I had achieved one of my goals: finishing and publishing a children’s fantasy story. It may or may not be the greatest children’s fantasy story ever told, but I accomplished something that I never thought possible because I didn’t quit.

I learned about the craft of writing and it developed me as a writer. The learning is never-ending, but when I realized that I’m not Wonder Woman, and that I don’t have to race toward the finish line, my journey is more enjoyable because I can walk leisurely toward my goals, and still make time for my family.

I’ve a few other writing projects I’m working on, and I’m enjoying the process.

What’s Hindering You From Accomplishing Your Goal?

Don’t wait. Take a step. Take two. Take one day at a time, and don’t become anxious that things aren’t happening as fast as you’d like.

If we race to achieve our goals, we miss out on the growing process. Our pastor once said that the difference between a dream and a goal is that a goal takes planning. Maturity and growth take time. You know more now than you did twenty years ago, right? So take your knowledge, stir in some hard work, flavor it with persistence, and season it with the sense of knowing that your working toward your goal.

And, don’t become discouraged if your first attempt doesn’t work out. Quitters never reach the finish line. If you quit, you’ll never know if you could’ve accomplished your goal. I had to tell myself aloud time and again, “I’m not going to quit this time.”

Slow down. Take your time. Enjoy life. Enjoy the journey. We only have one life. Let’s live it to its fullest so that God will be glorified!

That’s how God has been growing me.

We would love to hear your success stories or where you are at on your journey in the comments below.

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23 Comments

  • Reply bethany mcilrath February 20, 2017 at 7:42 am

    Heather, thanks for sharing this part of your story so humbly and candidly! Gives me much to think on today : )
    bethany mcilrath recently posted…Knowledge Bloats (1/6)My Profile

  • Reply Jaime Hampton February 20, 2017 at 9:27 pm

    Debbie, I can so relate to your post! It’s so easy to ride the wave of enthusiasm for a project, idea, or even a calling. This was a great reminder to me to persevere beyond the “honeymoon” stage of whatever I am feeling God placing before me, and putting in the hard work. Thanks so much for this post!
    Jaime Hampton recently posted…Prevailing PrayerMy Profile

    • Reply Debbie February 21, 2017 at 10:54 am

      Thank you, Jaime. Isn’t it so true? I’ve done it. I’d try things, start things, and then give up. 😏 Thanks for sharing. –blessings
      Debbie recently posted…What is Your Passion?My Profile

  • Reply Andrea February 21, 2017 at 4:08 am

    We don’t ever give up – my pastor always teaches that if we give up, the enemy wins! And we definitely don’t want that!
    Andrea recently posted…Praying Without Ceasing – It’s SO Important To Pray!My Profile

    • Reply Debbie February 21, 2017 at 8:08 am

      You’re so right, Andrea. Thanks for sharing. –blessings

  • Reply Heather Hart February 21, 2017 at 9:30 am

    Debbie, this post hits so close to home. My biggest issues is balancing everything on my list. And your friend was right, the key is to take baby steps. I’m working on a plan that would be doable. Thanks for this great reminder.
    Heather Hart recently posted…Slow Down and Stand In AweMy Profile

    • Reply Debbie February 21, 2017 at 10:57 am

      Thanks, Heather. You’re such an encouragement! Baby steps work best because you’re less overwhelmed. Thanks for sharing. –blessings
      Debbie recently posted…What is Your Passion?My Profile

  • Reply Amy Hagerup February 21, 2017 at 9:32 am

    Thanks for sharing this, Debbie. I love your forthrightness and your comfortable style. Keep writing. LOL. By the way, you might enjoy the book “The War of Art” which is all about the resistance we encounter when practicing our art.
    Amy Hagerup recently posted…What I Learned While Teaching Preschoolers in Children’s ChurchMy Profile

    • Reply Debbie February 21, 2017 at 11:00 am

      Hi Amy, thank you. I will definitely make a point of checking the book out. Sounds good. Thanks for sharing. –blessings
      Debbie recently posted…What is Your Passion?My Profile

  • Reply Kristi February 21, 2017 at 7:21 pm

    One thing I learned about myself is that I’m was an all in type of person…and because of that some things eventually fell to the wayside even though I believed God was calling me to them. Once I started praying and asking about God’s timing, then I’ve been better able to not quit because I know this is the time for that action.

    Blessings to you!
    Kristi recently posted…Mustard Seed Kingdom: Small Things for Big PurposesMy Profile

    • Reply Debbie Erickson February 21, 2017 at 8:29 pm

      I know, we can take on so much that we can’t focus sometimes. And, yes, I learned a long while ago that His timing is perfect. Thanks for sharing, Kristin.–blessings

  • Reply Amy Christensen February 21, 2017 at 8:17 pm

    Good thoughts. It is easy to just give up on pursuing our dreams and what we think God wants us to do, but instead we should stick to it! Thanks for this good post. – Amy

    • Reply Debbie March 15, 2017 at 5:27 pm

      Thank you, Amy. It is so hard sometimes. Thanks for your comment!

  • Reply Kalin February 22, 2017 at 7:04 am

    Great inspiration. This is my theme for 2017, not giving up on what I’m passionate for!

    • Reply Debbie March 15, 2017 at 5:29 pm

      Thanks for your comment, Kalin. I pray that you’ll pursue your passion because it’s so worth it.

  • Reply Karen Del Tatto February 22, 2017 at 2:31 pm

    Debbie, Thank you so much for sharing your writing journey; a journey that has practical application for any purpose or goal we ourselves may have.

    I like the idea of breaking things down into smaller pieces, like you did with smaller chunks of writing time. It really does help the process, and avoids disappointment.

    • Reply Debbie March 15, 2017 at 5:34 pm

      Hi Karen, thank you so much for your comment. I know, the process seems a little easier when we break it down to avoid becoming overwhelmed. I’m so glad you got a blessing from the post. May God bless you and lead you to the place He wants you to be. –blessings

  • Reply Maria Hass February 25, 2017 at 1:33 am

    Oooh this rubbed a few nerves with me! I’m a quitter too. I am thankful that God isn’t done with me yet either. I’m learning to be more faithful and trust Him with the results. Thank you! -Maria
    Maria Hass recently posted…Seward!My Profile

    • Reply Debbie March 15, 2017 at 5:40 pm

      Hi Maria, I know, it’s no fun to quit. 🙂 God brings people into our lives that will encourage us and sometimes give us a nudge. I pray we can all trust Him more each day so that we can glorify Him. Thank you so much for commenting. It’s such a blessing to hear from people! –blessings

  • Reply Samantha Wiraatmaja March 2, 2017 at 7:02 am

    I love this! So encouraging
    Samantha Wiraatmaja recently posted…Breaking Through Into Your BreakthroughMy Profile

    • Reply Debbie March 15, 2017 at 5:43 pm

      Hi Samantha, thank you so much for your kind remark. It’s an encouragement. I’m so glad you liked the post. –blessings to you!

    This is a safe place to where Christian women can get candid. We won’t be publishing any harsh comments directed at other commenters or our bloggers. If you want to get judgmental, go for it. I’ll listen, I promise to read it, I just won’t post it for everyone else. Candidly Christian is designed to be a safe haven for women who are ready to get candid. We retain the right to moderate our comments as we see fit. By submitting a comment below, you hereby grant us the irrevocable, non-exclusive right to edit, delete, copy, adapt, modify, publish, broadcast, and/or distribute the submitted content on this website and/or other material created by us.

    Remember: From our side of the computer screen, we can’t see your tears. We can’t see your beautiful smile. We can’t hear the emotion behind your words or the tone of your voice. All we get are your words. Write them with love.

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