“I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, and I have remained faithful.” – 2 Timothy 4:7
You’ve probably seen the t-shirt with this popular saying – “Pain is temporary. Quitting lasts a lifetime.” This phrase has been a reminder for me that when the going gets tough, the tough get going. Growing up, that was the expectation; when you start something, you finish it. Period.
As a competitor, there have been plenty of times I’ve wanted to quit, to give up, to give in to the pain and suffering or disappointment. And I still have moments like that today.
My ability to persevere and finish was tested recently on a 37-mile bike ride in the mountains of Colorado. Others had warned me of the relentless climbs. At about 16 miles in, I began to grow weary. My legs were heavy. I played mental games and even prayed the Lord’s Prayer a few times. But the climbing just kept coming. Finally, with a long road stretched out in front of me heading toward the sky, I decided to get off the bike and take a break. By take a break, I mean quit. Sure, I finished the ride, but I gave up before reaching the summit, and I knew it.
Challenges like this test your pain threshold and ability to persevere. They remind us that we need the power and presence of God, especially in the hardest moments.
In the Bible, Joshua learned these same lessons as he took over leadership of God’s people – the nation of Israel. With the task of entering the Promised Land, he was facing challenges he didn’t think he could handle. There would be moments where he would want to quit.
Grit helps you not quit. Forging mental toughness and grit requires that we take on challenges that push our outer limits. We’ll never expand our capabilities until we’re pushed to our breaking point. And we may never truly experience the full power of God until we step way out of our comfort zone. Just when you’re ready to quit, God can help you overcome, if you let Him.
- In what areas do you feel like quitting?
- What is one thing you will challenge yourself with that requires you to rely on God’s power to persevere?
Joshua 1:9, 16; 2 Timothy 4:7
“Father, help me to develop the grit so I never quit. Help me rely on your power and presence in the toughest times so I can finish strong. Amen.”