It doesn’t matter who you are or where you live. Everyone gets to feeling like this. Champions at times feel like this. Kings at times feel like this. Preachers at times feel like this. Parents at times feel like this. Teachers at times feel like this. Even our Lord Jesus felt like this. What is this? This is a feeling that comes upon all of us from time to time. None of us are exempt from its clutches and truly there is no escape from its psychological torment. This feeling is the feeling to QUIT. This is a feeling which envelops all of us and makes us wonder if ‘it is really worth it’.
If there is one thing I have learned about stepping out of one’s comfort zone is how easy it is to get discouraged. In the beginning there is a high level of excitement! Life is good and good changes are about to take place, but as the days wear on, the excitement wanes and then as usual, you are still left with what you started with…yourself! Isn’t it funny how we think we can avoid our problems or ignore our problems, yet at the end of the day, when all is said and done, the only one we still see in the mirror is ourselves. The mirror reflects all of who we are. It is but an outer summation of a hidden inner history of who we really are. The saying is true, ‘you can run but you can’t hide’. None of us can hide from who we truly are and when the fight gets tough or should I say tougher, then this is the place where what is hidden is usually revealed. Many times the weaknesses we have hidden within our functional images of ourselves cannot be revealed in the short-term spurts of an initial change of course. But it’s when one stays the course and remains steadfast toward a goal, this is when the deep nuggets of distress are uncovered. When this happens the easiest thing to do is to QUIT. The easiest thing to do is to RUN AWAY. Just revert back to the old ways of life where the road was smoother and the pain was less.
After many years of endeavoring to break through the comfort zones of my life I have found these screaming episodes from within my brain to be very common. As a matter of fact, I have had a few shouting matches going on within myself over these past few days. Like, why keep writing these blogs, no one reads them anyway. Who are they helping? What good are these blogs doing for anyone? JUST QUIT! RUN AWAY! But I have also learned that it is in these very moments where the true victory lies. If I can hang on through the deceptively sly voices of imagination and stupid reasoning, somewhere in the hanging on, I will learn something profoundly about myself.
The scripture says that Jesus was tempted at all points like we are tempted. He felt what we feel. In the Garden of Gethsemane, Jesus felt like quitting. He wondered if what He was doing and about to do, was it really worth it? Everything within Him screamed to quit! When all looked and felt hopeless, the Lord knew beyond the pain there was a victory that would forever change all of mankind. There was a JOY which was set before Him which caused Him to rise above the pain. All of us must come to this fork in the road where all of our ‘moments of quitting are confronted and decided upon…do we quit or do we move forward. Over the years I have embraced a saying which was penned by Lance Armstrong in his book, “It’s Not About the Bike”. “Pain is temporary. It may last a minute, or an hour, or a day, or a year, but eventually it will subside and something else will take its place. If I quit, however, it lasts forever. That surrender, even the smallest act of giving up, stays with me. So when I feel like quitting, I ask myself, which would I rather live with?” In order to transcend the momentary feelings of quitting, I have to SEE beyond the feelings which are engulfing my mind. I have to speak to myself (and I have and still do), PAIN IS TEMPORARY BUT QUITTING LAST FOREVER.