Throwing in the Towel
There seems to be a day for everyone and everything. There is even a website that lists the many “national days” that is amazingly long. One day isn’t all that surprising. It is national quitters’ day. I learned about this day from an AAII advertisement. What isn’t surprising is that we quit. It is a shame, and it is sad commentary about our natural tendencies that we never even start. This applies to our marriages, our parenting, our families, our careers, our investments, our dietary disciplines, and our physical exercise. No part of our lives is left untouched by our deadly and self-destructive tendency to throw in the towel.
Surprisingly few people set goals for the day, the week, the month, or the year. Even fewer have life goals. Those that do set goals often just “throw in the towel.” This idiom means I don’t think I can succeed, so I quit.
When is the 2023 National Quitters Day?
“The second Friday in January is known as Quitters Day as it is the most likely day for people to give up on their new year resolutions. Research conducted by Strava, the social network for athletes, has discovered that the second Friday in January was the fateful day when most quitters’ motivations may begin to falter. By analyzing over 31.5 million global January activities, Strava was able to pinpoint the second Friday in January as “Quitters’ Day”. SOURCE: There is a Day For That
Goals for 2023
Although I don’t really know how much longer I have, I’d like to redeem 2023. Therefore, I have been thinking about goals for the year ahead. Some of the goals have to do with teaching, some with sharing what God has put in our hands with others, and some have to do with where I will spend my time and energy.
I don’t want to celebrate National Quitter’s Day. Do you? If you are a follower of Jesus, this is probably one of the most important things to consider: what will bring glory to God and benefit others? I resolve to love God and love others in 2023. All of the other things should flow from this main goal.
The Christian and National Quitter’s Day
I’ve been on this earth long enough to know about my own quitting, and the quitting of many other Christians. We give up far too easily. Let me remind you of two areas of life where quitting is not an option for the follower of Jesus. We are to keep praying. We are to continue to do good and not be weary in doing good.
In the Christian’s life, “quitting day” is contrary to living by faith and persisting until the last breath. Jesus even told a parable about persistence in prayer in Luke chapter 18. His reminder wasn’t designed to make us feel guilty, but to help us to remember that God will do justice for us. We just need to present our needs to him and trust him.
Persistent Prayer: The Parable of the Persistent Widow
“And he told them a parable to the effect that they ought always to pray and not lose heart. He said, ‘In a certain city there was a judge who neither feared God nor respected man. And there was a widow in that city who kept coming to him and saying, ‘Give me justice against my adversary.’ For a while he refused, but afterward he said to himself, ‘Though I neither fear God nor respect man, yet because this widow keeps bothering me, I will give her justice, so that she will not beat me down by her continual coming.’
And the Lord said, ‘Hear what the unrighteous judge says. And will not God give justice to his elect, who cry to him day and night? Will he delay long over them? I tell you, he will give justice to them speedily. Nevertheless, when the Son of Man comes, will he find faith on earth?’” Luke 18:1-8
Persistent in Doing Good
“And let us not grow weary of doing good, for in due season we will reap, if we do not give up.” Galatians 6:9
Resolved to Persist
Don’t give up. But perhaps you and I need to start by starting. And perhaps we need to set goals that we have on our daily agenda. You will be a rare person indeed if you fail to celebrate national quitter’s day.
I have resolved not to be in the quitting crowd. One of my goals for 2023 is to become even more generous and thoughtful in giving of our financial resources and my time. Both are in limited supply, and I don’t have too many more years of supply left. Perhaps you have less time than you think you have as well. Don’t give up. Don’t waste your life.
All scripture passages are from the English Standard Version except as otherwise noted.