It’s OK to Give Up

I hold onto some things very tightly. Like white-knuckles-gritted-teeth-if-I-let-go-I-die kind of tightly. It’s actually amazing I have the energy to do anything else. Anything but hold onto these things. I don’t believe I am alone in this. I think the majority of us are probably walking down the street, teeth gritted, knuckles white, nails digging into our palms, holding on so painfully tight to things that were never ours to being with.

Why do we do it? If it hurts us so badly and causes so much neck tension and money spent at the chiropractor, why do we ball up and bear it like it’s our lot? Do you know the things I’m talking about? Everyone has different ones. I become aware of new ones all the time. After college, I finally took a breath and looked up from my text books to realize I had spent four years fiercely determined to make perfect grades. Bs were not allowed. Not into my realm of control.

For many of us, there is that relationship or one certain person we didn’t realize we were clinging onto for dear life until it was over or that person was gone and by a miracle, we were still alive. And for me these days it is often success and succeeding and success and succeeding. The idea of failure is so terrifying, we would rather keep clenching those fists and straining our hand muscles than loosen them and find out what would happen.

What would happen? If we lost the tension? If we, dare I say it, gave up? Because sometimes I am tired. And all of time, I’m not actually controlling what’s happening around me.

Maybe, just maybe, the pain of holding onto things is painful because those things are not meant to be held. And maybe if those things are not meant to be held, they are meant to be released and we are–yes, I dare say it–meant to give up. If we allow history to teach us, giving up is inevitable anyways. And if we don’t willingly do it right now, today, something will force us to eventually. Might as well see the pain and striving for what it is and what it is not. Might as well give up. I’m starting to suspect that it really is ok.

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4 thoughts on “It’s OK to Give Up

  1. Love your words. At one point in my journey, I felt God clearly tell me to STOP striving, ceasing, evangelising, etc. and sit with him. I was frustrated and kept crying out, “But what about all the people who don’t know you?” “How will my Mandarin improve if I’m not out meeting new people and practicing?” “What will happen if I am still {lazy} and don’t do anything?” I spent a month pouring over scripture, pouring out my heart to the Lord, and painting on my little porch in China. It was the most challenging and shaping month and allowed me to continue onward in my journey to share the Gospel. It’s oftentimes easier to grip and strive than it is to let go and be still.

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  2. Thank you Andrea, for this post. I also find it hard to be still, and instead think that I can control more by holding on tightly to things not meant to be held. ~

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