Monday, August 6, 2012

3 more things to do if you feel like quitting

As soon as I clicked the publish button on my last post, 5 things to do if you feel like quitting, several more points came to mind that I could've included. And after the correspondence I’ve received since the post, I thought it might be timely to submit an addendum of 3 more things to do if you feel like quitting.

Invest in the work of others. If we’re going through a rough patch, most likely some around us might also be facing tough times. Encouraging others when we least feel like doing so through our time, our finances, our prayers, or simply a word could be life changing for them and us. In God’s economy, you can’t give without the blessing returning to you.

Not that we ever give to get. But, it’s what God did for Job, “The Lord turned thecaptivity of Job, when he prayed for his friends...” (Job 42:10). If we’re feeling captive in our own discouragement, turning our faces heavenward in prayer for others helps us refocus, helps us see God at work in other lives, and encourages us to persevere.

Finish something. Often the reason we feel like quitting is we can’t seem to finish anything. Survey the projects you have going, choose one, and stick with it until you finish. Block checked. Just seeing one thing finished gives a sense of getting out of that rut we may feel we’re in. From there, we can press on to the next task.

Almost every year since my sister became a teacher, I’ve make little ornaments for her students at Christmas. Each year, I’d make the same ornament with slight variations-- different ribbon, and glitter. I’d cut bell shapes out of red velveteen, sew them together, turn them inside out, stuff them, glue a big ribbon with a jingle bell attached, and write the children’s names in glitter. As you can see, there were many steps. However, right out of the box, I had to finish one bell. I needed to see the finished project, how the ribbon looked that year, if the glitter color worked. I could have chosen to assemble them all a step at a time. Again, I had to finish one at least most of the way to keep my momentum.

I’m telling you, it helps.

Do something creative purely for the joy of it. If we were four, we’d finger paint. The second year we homeschooled, I read somewhere about practicing spelling words by writing them out in shaving cream. My daughter was already at work on her words when I asked my son what he wanted to do next. He responded, “I want to get messy.” And he did.

Sometimes we need to get messy with creativity. When we feel like quitting--plunging fingers into a lump of clay, plucking flowers from the garden to make a wild arrangement, or cooking up some outrageous cookies can jump-start our batteries.

We so often evaluate everything we do for its practicality. Do something creatively impractical--for God’s glory and your joy.

As soon as I hit send on this post, I’m probably going to think of three more things to add to the list. But maybe you’ve thought of something that’s worked for you. If so, feel free to add to these in the comment section below. You never know who might benefit.

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