April 23

Written by Bill Grandi on April 23rd, 2019

My title is Keep Going vs Give Up

As a life-long athlete I have known times of wanting to just pack it in, i.e. quit, to give up. As a college basketball player there were games our team was out-matched and most definitely out-played. We played several scholarship teams (athletes on scholarship) that we had no business playing. And we were playing their second team/freshmen team!! (Back then freshmen didn’t dominate by starting). We were so far behind in the game the first team eventually just sat on the bench and we spent more time “joking” than playing. It was humiliating. We knew when to fold them. One time the coach scheduled us to play a local college about 1/2 hour away (Moorehead State U) as a tune-up for an upcoming tournament. Good thing we didn’t allow it to affect our games at the tournament. 🙂

Having to give up from sheer overload (outmatched) or because we are tired is different from quitting or giving up out of indifference. Indifference says, “I don’t care to compete anymore.”

Sadly, there are followers of Christ who do that. The race gets too long; brutal; hot and sweaty. Too many obstacles. As followers of Christ, we should not give up; throw in the towel; or throw our hands up in the air in resignation of defeat! Paul says, “Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one receives the prize? So run that you may obtain it. Every athlete exercises self-control in all things. They do it to receive a perishable wreath, but we an imperishable.” (9:24-25)

As a cyclist I know what it is to hit one more hill and say, “Ooooh.”  That’s a groan from deep inside that says, “Another hill? Are you serious?” I live in a very hilly part of Indiana and at times it seems it is one hill after another. I’ve participated in an event called the Hilly Hundred- 50+ miles/day of one hill after another. Quitting is not an option (at least for me).

I see my Christian life as a metaphor. Quitting simply is not an option for me. I want to finish, and finish well. I am in pursuit of my goal and I’m not about to quit now. I know what that means. May I echo the psalmist in 28: 7-8a: “The Lord is my strength and my shield; in him my heart trusts, and I am helped; my heart exults, and with my song I give thanks to him. The Lord is the strength of his people.”

“Father, be my strength. When the hill gets steeper and seemingly endless, be my strength. Be that oomph. Give me that second wind to keep going and to not quit.”

Just a little add-on this morning. Click here.

 

10 Comments so far ↓

  1. Pam says:

    I remember when our daughter was in high school and she was pushing all our buttons. I said to Dick, “Can I run away?” I just felt like I had reached the end of my rope. But with Jesus’ help we hung in there and today we couldn’t ask for a better relationship with her. With God all things are possible.

  2. Ryan S. says:

    I have lost count of how many times I have thought about throwing in the towel. Periods of minimal forward movement followed by setbacks. God comes through, He always does. I cling to that hope and expectation, then take another step.

    • Bill Grandi says:

      I join you in that my friend. Losing count is easy to do. Your words of “cling…then take another step” ring out strong.

  3. When it comes to following Jesus, there is no quitting the race. We are in it to win it!
    Blessings, Bill!

  4. Glynn says:

    I was biking Grant’s Trail in St. Louis yesterday – only 20 miles roundtrip, but then there was the wind. You normally feel a wind in your face when you bike, but added to that was a strong warm wind from the west. Biking generally north to south, it mean dealing with the wind both ways. But to complete the ride, I had to put up with the wind. It was worth it.

    • Bill Grandi says:

      I live in a very windy area with a lot of flat areas. The wind plays havoc with cycling for sure but as you said…you put up with the wind…even when “Peace be still doesn’t work.” 🙂

  5. floyd says:

    Love the attitude, Bill.

    I think that attitude of never giving up is one of the greatest gifts our Father can give us.

    Keep the good race, brother. I know you’re not going to quit!!!

    • Bill Grandi says:

      Thanks for the kind and encouraging words Floyd. Never give up. Someone once said that over and over in a speech once. 🙂