Why It's Ok to Quit

4 years ago

 

I take responsibility seriously. Probably too seriously. I can’t stand (Yes, read judgment here. I told you I don’t hide my sin.) when people say they’ll do something and then don’t follow through.

However, my commitment to responsibility has lead me down some roads I shouldn’t have traveled. Ok. That’s probably not true either. Guilt did it.

I have been filling positions out of guilt, not out of God’s calling, but because I feel “responsible” I am committed to doing them “right” until a replacement can be found.

Do you see the fallacy in this thinking?

Somebody has to get the job done, I’m here, and I have at least the basic skill set needed. Fine. I’ll do it.

My husband says no one ever has to ask me to do something because I just volunteer. And then I volunteer everyone around me.

I do this everywhere. Work, volunteer organizations, church, random places I happen to be.

Hello, my name is Carrie, and I’m addicted to volunteering for jobs that need filled regardless of God’s calling on my life.

You have no idea how much that hurt me to type it out. And no idea how many times I deleted it and retyped it.

Do you know that when you take an addiction for volunteering and add it to an overactive sense of responsibility what you get is trapped in endless situations that you NEVER should have entered to start with?

My last several posts have been about sabbatical. The hardest part of this sabbatical has been walking away from the responsibility and commitments that I had made.

Remember, I can’t stand it when people flake on commitment. If you signed on for a year, then by golly, you do it. Three years? Suck it up, sister, and plow on through.

As a result, I’ve really been beating myself up over this aspect of sabbatical.

Did you read that there?

I’VE.

No one else has.

No one has put me down (at least that I know about), called me and insisted I fulfill my roles, quoted scripture insisting that I stay strong in the ministry, or shunned me publicly for leaving them in a bad spot. God has not convicted me in any way, shape, or form to pick up anything I laid down. My family has noticed positive changes.

So why have I struggled?

It’s not because I want it all back. It’s because I’ve judged others for doing the same thing. It’s because I feel guilty for other people having to pick up the pieces and go on.

It’s because I didn’t think quitting was a Godly thing to do.

You can’t just change your mind? Can you?

If you’ve ever done a read through the Bible in a year plan, you know where it starts. Genesis. Chris and I are attempting this together this year, and my morning reading has been speaking to me.

Sometimes quitting is a Godly thing to do.

Sometimes you have to start over.

I found myself reading Genesis 6 this week. I got to verse 3 and I had to reread it several times.

Then the Lord said, “My Spirit will not put up with humans for such a long time, for they are only mortal flesh. In the future, their normal lifespan will be no more than 120 years.” Genesis 6:3 NLT

I’m not going to lie. I kept reading this thinking, “God, you created these people with a plan, and then because of the choices you made changed your mind?!?! You can’t quit! Your God!”

And then I read on to Noah and got to verse 13.

So God said to Noah, “I have decided to destroy all living creatures, for they have filled the earth with violence. Yes, I will wipe them all out along with the earth!” Genesis 6:12 NLT

And again, I was a bit frustrated. “For real?!?! You’re just going to quit! Up and change your mind about the ones made in Your image and wipe them out to start over? You aren’t allowed to change your mind! You made a decision now stick to it!”

And then it happened.

If God Himself can start over, can seemingly change His mind, why can’t you?

Why can’t you?

Do you need to change your mind about something? Let go of something? Walk away from something?

Why can’t you?

Change, my dears friends, my be hard, and at times, like in the Old Testament, may be harsh, but sometimes it is necessary.

 

 photo credit: <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/auntiep/3349295132/">Auntie P</a> via <a href="http://photopin.com">photopin</a> <a href="http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/2.0/">cc</a>

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