How To Keep Going When We Really Want To Quit

I recently made the decision to keep moving forward in my quest for a 2nd Ironman finish. You can read about it here.

Even though I know the chances of me finishing this race are slim at best, I still feel the need to keep moving forward in this challenge. I had numerous opportunities to quit but I felt there is a bigger reason in play here for me to at least show up to start this race.

It got me thinking about how often we don’t get to the finish line because it was either easier to quit or to not realize that the quest was really the journey and not the destination.


It also got me thinking how often I tried to do something on my own rather then lean on God. In a recent message at church, Pastor Luke MacDonald spoke about the need to just keep going. How we need to keep our focus on the destination and that is what will keep us going through the journey. While he was talking about the goal being heaven and being with Jesus, I found myself thinking about how this related to my recent struggle with my wanting to quit Ironman. I continue to do marathons, and I signed up to do this Ironman to try to glorify God, give Him the glory through all of this, and to try to inspire cancer patients.

There were times when I was struggling with not getting quality training because of an injury. I tried spending time with God in prayer and it just seemed to be missing something.

“When it feels like God is furthest away, that is usually when He is closest.”-Luke MacDonald

I was starting to make this race about me and not about what I intended it to be. I believe that God has opened up some doors for me that I need to walk through them. He might be wanting me to do something or do something through me and the circumstance that I am in. My job is to acknowledge that I am not in charge nor am I in control of the situation. The truth is Jesus is in charge and I can’t do it myself.

Philippians 4:13 I can do all things through Christ who gives me strength!

So now that I am back on the God’s plan instead of my plan, here are some things I have noticed, in myself and others, that will derail us from moving forward and possibly doing things we never thought were possible.

Things that prevent us from moving forward:

Worrying- Quit worrying about mistakes you’ve made. How are we expected to learn anything if we never make mistakes? God doesn’t shower us with judgment, He showers us with grace. Maybe it’s time we start accepting it.

While we are it, lets stop worrying about what other people are thinking and saying about us too. We can’t control people’s thoughts and actions but we can control what we are thinking and doing about them.

Comparing To Others- God made each of us different and we should embrace that. When I compare who I am to someone else, I am minimizing the gifts that God did give us.

Defining What “Success” Is- I was not given a lot of athletic ability but I have finished over 20 marathons. If I compared my accomplishments to a Boston qualifier, then I would really be setting myself up for failure. Not everything is about winning/losing. Each situation is different and each person’s story is different.

Trying To Impress Everyone- As the old saying goes, “You wouldn’t worry so much about what others thought of you if realized how seldom they actually did.” Live you life trying to glorify God and bring honor to Him. If you are doing things to try to impress people, you are setting yourself up for disappointment.

Doubting and Second-Guessing Yourself- When in doubt just take the next small step.  Sometimes the smallest step in the right direction ends up being the biggest step of your life.

Negative/Unsupportive People- Ever know those people who when they walk in the room, the entire energy level gets sucked down? How about people who feel the need to “poo-poo” your hopes, dreams, and goals? If you have people that constantly talk bad about your accomplishments or try to minimize your goals, then try to distance yourself from them. Don’t let people shatter your dreams!

Waiting For The “Perfect” Time- No better time then the present to try to do something AMAZING. Tomorrow is promised to no one so take advantage of the day that God has given you. I wrote about this earlier. Read about it here. 

It’s Ok To Fail- We all fall down at times but the key is to keep getting up. How many great, epic things would we miss out on if we didn’t attempt them because of our fear of failing? Don’t let the fear of not succeeding on the first attempt keep you from trying at all.

“I've missed more than 9000 shots in my career. I've lost almost 300 games. 26 times, I've been trusted to take the game winning shot and missed. I've failed over and over and over again in my life. And that is why I succeed.”-Michael Jordan

“I have not failed. I have just found 10,000 things that do not work.”-Thomas Edison

So I am going to give it my all in my quest to be a 2-time Ironman. God has opened up this door for me and I am going to swim, bike, and run through it. I’ll do what I can and leave the results up to God.

Do you have a goal or a dream that you are waiting to attempt? Maybe today is the perfect time to give it a try.


Proverbs 3:5-6 Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him and He will make your paths straight.

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