Give up? I know you’re aghast!
No one ever advises people to give up. We are to try again, be optimistic, or my favorite – dream big! I know “give up” is so defeatist sounding.
THE NEW YEAR IS A TIME FOR THE RESOLUTION SOLUTION, NOT GIVING UP!
Admit it, aren’t you tired of striving, improving, reaching, performing in this world? Oh, and the New Year’s resolutions that fail every year are disheartening.
Well, here are four ideas to make 2020 the year to “give up.”
GIVE UP WORK
Okay, I hear you. If we all stopped working the world will collapse. It is also blasphemous, Patrice. The Bible says no work no food. (2 Thessalonians 3:10)
Yeah, but Jesus said for us to bring our heavy burdens to Him and He will give us rest. (Matthew 11: 28-30)
A coworker came to me crying one spring day because she was dealing with a parent in need, a sick husband, along with a child issue.
Gee Patrice, how about a little compassion? Multiple problems like this bring tears to most people’s eyes.
Yes, but here is what she said to me as tears streamed down her face, “I can’t find time to plant my flowers. I can’t just let it go. I have to plant flowers.”
Really? I know the stress was probably making her a little illogical, but let’s get real, she didn’t have to plant flowers. Skipping flowers one year is not a big deal.
Yeah, let’s give up the work mentality that everything must be done the same way all the time. Remember the story of Martha!
Martha was distracted and her soul was in turmoil as she prepared the “perfect” dinner for Jesus and guests. On the other hand, her sister, Mary, sat at Jesus’ feet learning and worshipping.
Who do you think Jesus lauded? Read Luke 10: 38-42 to find out. Spoiler alert: it was Mary!
I admit I’m more Martha than Mary. I also wonder why Jesus was kind of hard on Martha. After all, eventually, the men will want to eat that day. But the point is that ditching the flowers or making a less than perfect meal is ok. Put Jesus first and rest in Him in 2020.
GIVE UP SAFETY
What? We install security systems, carry weapons, and teach our children fire safety and stranger danger. Give up all that?
No, I’m talking about the safety we experience in our comfort zones. Safe places that are comfortable and allow us security.
For instance, we stay away from a situation where embarrassment is a possibility e.g. missing opportunities to share our faith because we don’t want to be in an uncomfortable position or make a scene!
We skip on the mission trip because we want to stay in our comfortable home.
We sometimes put comfort above helping out at church or in our community. We are tired, too busy, it’s cold, or someone else will do it!
Stepping out of our comfort zones is a necessary exercise. Make sure you do it at least once in 2020!
GIVE UP COMPETITION
Competition is healthy. At least that is what I hear you saying. If we don’t compete we can’t grab the brass ring. Competing with others is the only way to win – to get ahead in this world.
Ecclesiastes 3 tells us there is a time for everything, which I’m sure includes competition. However, Philippians 2: 3-4 says: Don’t be selfish; don’t try to impress others. Be humble, thinking of others as better than yourselves. Don’t look out only for your own interests, but take an interest in others, too.
Comparison is tiring and brings on discontentment. Stop trying to have more or be more than others.
Make 2020 the year you scrap the fatigue of comparing and, instead, rest in Jesus.
GIVE UP PRAYER
Okay, Patrice, you’ve gone too far. Nowhere in the Bible does it advocate to give up prayer.
Of course, we must pray. But what is the purpose of your prayers? Does the time spent in prayer focus on growing closer to God in a personal way?
Think about your earthly relationships and how they evolve. Do you have quality friendships with one person asking for stuff and the other delivering? Oh sure the person on the receiving end throws a thank you and praise occasionally, but primarily this friend is a taker.
Of course, a good friendship is not developed that way. You get to know people through fellowship, love, good seasons, sad moments, and fun times. Furthermore, mutual support, communication, and understanding are all part of developing intimacy.
Does this sound like your prayer life?
If your answer is no, download our free eBook and see how it can help you rediscover the joy of prayer and reconnect with God. Just click on Books at the top right at the top of the page and download this free resource.
Hope this helps you with some changes to make in the new year. I know I won’t succeed at all of them, but I can at least give one or two a try.
COMMENTS AND ADDITIONAL RESOURCE
I would love for you to share your thoughts in the comment section below. What do you think about giving up in 2020? Did you make any New Year resolutions that might give other readers an idea for this new year?
Also, if you have any subjects you want to see covered in my blog in 2020, please let me know.
You can click here for a good article on prayer by World Vision.
My prayer is for all to have a safe, happy, and Christ-filled 2020.