The Moment You Want To Give Up. . .

{Image credit: rnl / 123RF Stock Photo; Quote: Laurie Wallin}

{Image credit: rnl / 123RF Stock Photo; Quote: Laurie Wallin}

Raise your hand if getting healthier was one of your New Year’s resolutions.

Yep, me too. When my gym informed me I had unused personal training sessions from a couple years ago, I figured I’d start there.

Just so you know, that was stupid.

Because now I’m weekly at the mercy of a muscle-bound neonate (ok, he’s 18), who says things like “Find your stride” while making me push a 45-pound weight across the gym floor.

“Find my stride?!” I yell in my mind, “I can’t find my pulse! It is so high, I think I’m dead already. . . . Find my stride.” [Insert grumbling here].

I went into it with enthusiasm, wanting to feel healthier and more energetic, but as it happens for so many dreams, it didn’t take long to hit the wall!

We all come to a place where we realize how much our dreams require of us, where we’re not sure we’ll make it. We may even want to quit trying.

We think:

  • It’s not worth it.
  • It’s too hard.
  • I’m not cut out for this.
  • I can’t make it.
  • I’m scared to keep trying.

Yesterday, as I pushed that weight across the gym floor—red-faced, miserable—I wanted to quit right there. I wanted to drop to the floor and cry. Everything hurt, especially my pride. And those words he said kept messing with me, taunting me.

Find your stride.

In the middle of pushing the weight around, the three words pulsed in my mind, and it started to make more sense:


Our dreams don’t have instruction manuals. They’re ours, birthed by God who sees us and our potential like nobody else can. Our dreams—of health, growth, invention, creativity, whatever—are found over time. Through a series of moments when we think we can’t try one more strategy, write one more paragraph, or push that weight one more millimeter across the floor. We find them in the trying. . . in the pushing just beyond what’s comfortable.


It’s yours. All yours. Just as it doesn’t have an instruction manual, it doesn’t have anyone else’s unique design, experiences, skills and motivation attached to it. It’s your heart’s fingerprint. The thing that sets you apart from 7 billion other people on this globe. Nobody else knows what it is to be me, feeling stronger because I stuck with it, or you, seeing God do amazing things through your gifts and efforts. It’s ours, and because of that, it’s precious. It’s worth it.


This dream of ours is unique, and so is the pace with which we must pursue it. Sometimes slow and steady wins the race, sometimes bursts of energy push us through instead. I want to be healthier, stronger again, so I have to find a pace that is, as my friend Holley Gerth recently reminded me, “not just doable, but sustainable.” So do you.

As I thought about that last part, in particular, something wonderful happened. I didn’t turn in to an Olympic superstar and start sprinting across the gym with my weight, but I found fresh motivation, encouragement to put one exhausted foot in front of the other until I got to the end of the exercise, stood up, and realized I did something I’ve never done before.

That moment I wanted to give up was the moment I had a choice—the same choice we always have:

Will we give up on what’s precious, what’s worth it? Or will we find our stride and take hold of our dream? {tweet this}

What’ll it be?

Your friend in (even the smallest) strides,


Linking up with others determined to step into their dreams at


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  1. Nicco Cobb says

    God told a man to roll a boulder up hill. Each day the man faithfully set himself to push that rock up the hill. Day after day he persisted, but the rock wouldn’t budge. Then after a month of pushing with all his might to no avail, he went to God and said, I have given all I have, my best everyday to accomplish the task you’ve given me. Why must I persist? God said, “look in the mirror child and behold the man you have become. I could move that rock with a blast from my nostril. Instead I chose to use it to strengthen you.” So don’t ever give up. He has a plan.

    • says

      So. . . when can I get you over here to write a guest post, Uncle M? Because in about 100 words you stuck an image in my mind that’s helped me more than once in the last 24 hours! 🙂