3 QUESTIONS TO ASK YOURSELF BEFORE QUITTING
Have you ever quit on something without thinking much about it and then regretted it later on?
I was this little 6 or 7-year-old and she was this older lady, at least to me, who lived across the street trying to give me piano lessons.
I had forgotten my assignment again for probably the second time on what may have been just my third lesson. So she proceeded to tell me that she was not going to let me touch the piano until I remember the assignment.
To my little brain, that did not make much sense. So when my mother asked me if I wanted to continue with my lessons, I said no.
To this day, I don’t remember what that assignment was, but what I do remember is quitting piano lessons when I could’ve started learning it at a very early age. (Looking back, I’m sure my teacher had a very good reason for the assignment, a foundation she wanted me to have.)
“You will never forget the day you walk away. You will never forget the day you quit.” - Pastor Jonathan Evans in his sermon called“Grit: The Failure”
I didn’t start taking piano lessons again until several years later and from time to time, I would regret not having an early start so I could play a lot better. I still can’t read sheet music as well as I’d love to. And I can only teach others up to the 2nd-grade level.
What about you, are there things that you’ve quit and regretted later in life? If so, I think there’s a way we can avoid making the same mistake by at least asking ourselves 3 main questions.
3 QUESTIONS TO ASK YOURSELF BEFORE QUITTING:
WHY AM I QUITTING?a. It’s too hard. - Never a good reason. You will never get far if you don’t do anything hard.b. It’s impossible to succeed in it.- Is it really or you just don’t want to put in the work? “Where there’s a will, there’s a way,” is something I have to remind myself from time to time. Or, as Shakespeare put it, “If there is a good will, there is great way.”c. It’s the best thing for you and your family. - You better be sure this the real reason and not just an excuse.d. God is calling you to something better or different. - Don’t be deceived. Not everything that looks great is necessarily better and this should align with c. Prayerfully consider this until you know for sure that it is what God is leading you to do, especially if it affects the lives of other people.
WHAT AM I QUITTING FOR?a. The fear of failure. - Everyone fails at something and you haven’t really lived unless you fail. The key is to get back up again.Moses had what seemed to be 9 failures to get Israel out of Egypt even with the great display of power that God would show Pharaoh and Egypt. It wasn’t after the 10th request that Pharaoh finally let them go. Even after that, Pharaoh would still back out on his word. But God gave them a great deliverance. (Exodus 7 - 14)Have you really tried all the options available to get rid of the obstacle you’re facing? Or are you holding yourself back from trying one last thing that God is whispering you to do, because you’re afraid it’s not going to work?How will you know unless you try? Finding out what doesn’t work isn’t such a bad thing either. It can lead you to what does work.Don’t you think that the One Who is calling you will be faithful to complete the work He’s begun in you? (Phil 1:6)Sometimes, He has to let us go through some failures to make sure we’re strong enough to handle the big victory that’s ahead.b. The fear of shame/embarrassment.This, in one sense, is linked to the fear of failure in that you worry about what other people will think of you fail.In another sense, you might be worried about what other people will say if you try and/or if you succeed. The only thing you need to worry about is what God would think. He loves you in your failures and in your successes.Another thing to point out is if your last option means asking somebody for help, are you afraid that you’re going to hear the big “NO?” I know the feeling. I hate bothering people.The more I get older though, the more a realize I’m just going to have to ask anyway. Just ask respectfully. At times, I’ve been surprised in hearing a “yes” from someone I was so sure was going to say “no.”c.The fear of missing out - on present pleasures. This is a constant battle as it is so much easier to find entertainment and to want to be entertained than to work at something.Be careful that you’re not giving up your future for a present pleasure. Not to say that we’re not supposed to have fun. We are, but it shouldn’t be the priority.Even people who do what they love for a living, work really hard at it. In fact, it’s because they’ve worked really hard that they’re able to do it for a living.d.The love of God - Most of the time God told people in the Bible to quit was when He wanted them to stop following other gods, turn from their wicked ways, and return to worshipping Him and following His commands.It was so their relationship with Him could be restored, and, as a bonus, give them a blessed life. (II Chron 7:14)This also goes back to what God is calling you to do. If you love Him, you will follow His lead even if quitting looks like failing on the outside.e. The love of others - because God is showing you that you can serve your family and/or other people better in a different way.
WHO AM I QUITTING FOR?a. The critic - The person who knows nothing about what’s best for you and what you’ve been through. What they say doesn’t really count unless it’s constructive criticism.b. The doubter - The person in you or outside of you that tells you you’re never good enough and that you are good for nothing and won’t make it until the end.Let me tell you that in God and with Jesus inside of you, you are enough. He has placed Godly dreams and desires inside of you, not so you can be crushed, but because He’s given you the ability to reach them. You just have to surrender them to Him so He can lead you in the right path.c. The believer- The person in you or outside of you who knows and tells you that there’s something better in store for you and this is not it.d. The Savior - The One who “...came to seek and save the lost…” (Luke 19:10) and who “(came) that (you) may have life, and have it to the full.” (John 10:10) Jesus saved you to live a victorious life. Make sure that when you quit, it is because what you’re quitting is something that doesn’t bring glory to Him. And don’t just quit without starting something better. Otherwise, you’d be quitting on life altogether.
Thankfully, even in our failures, God’s grace still works and His grace is sufficient. I can still enjoy playing the piano with what I do know. And I can teach others to play using chords.
Any thoughts on this? I'd love to hear your experiences. Feel free to comment below.