Should I Quit Trying

Three Reasons To Quit Trying

Corie Manglos Christian Living, Journey Blog Leave a Comment

There are reasons we need to quit trying.  The wise Yoda, from Star Wars, once said “There is no try. It is do or do not.”  Yes, my nerd is showing, but there is some radical truth to this thought.

A common saying one hears often is “I will try.  “To try is to make an effort, but it does not require diligence, best effort, or follow through.

In archery and in darts, precision is needed to hit the bullseye.  Archery is becoming a very popular school sport.  To be part of an archery team requires more than simply trying.  Simply trying to hit the bullseye does not imply real effort or practice involved, simple luck and hopeful aim.

Living a flouring Christian life requires more than simple luck and hopeful aim.  Rather, the better approach is to practice until the point of muscle memory.  One should repeat the process over and over until there is an automatic response.  To be diligent in one’s effort to achieve the most points (archery/dart wise).

Reason to quit trying #1: “I will try” gives me an out if I don’t really want to do what I am asked.

My husband asked me to pick up the lawnmower from the repair shop, but I had other things to take care of that day.  I could have said, “I will try.”  Meaning if something else came up, I could decide to do that instead.  It would have been  “tried” because I thought of doing it.  This way, I could give myself an out, a way to not do what was requested without really being honest.  In this case, I did take care of the lawnmower.  If I hadn’t completed the request, I had a pre-determined “out” for the task with ‘I will try.’

The problem with giving ourselves an out is that we are not giving our best effort to the people we love, the people depending on us.  Romans 12:10 says – “Be devoted to one another in love.  Honor one another above yourself” (NIV).  This verse teaches that we should honor the choices of another, we should do more than simply “try.”  We should actually give our best effort to those things we are asked to do.

Quit trying reason #2: “I will try” doesn’t show love.

When I ask my kids to pick up their toys, put their clothes away, or empty the dishwasher, I actually expect those things to be done!  “I will try” would not be an acceptable answer, because quite simply, it would allow them to disobey me by ‘forgetting’ to do what they said.

When I am going grocery shopping, I make a list because I don’t want to forget anything.  My kids will often shout something they want me to pick as I head out the door.  If I say “I will try” rather than writing down the item, almost guarantees when I get to the store, it will not make it into the cart.

It doesn’t show love when we forget what we say we will do.  Love requires more than trying, love requires effort and follow through.

Reason to quit trying #3: “I will try” is an opportunity for me to lie.

The reality is that we often say, “I will try,” when in actuality, we don’t really intend to put forth any real effort.  It is a way of making a false promise, and a false promise is a lie.  When we say, “I will try,” others hear us saying we will do.  They hear we will do our best.  But unless we actually do our best, we have told an untruth.

It is pretty clear in life that people who often tell untruths are not trustworthy.  When we try rather than do, we run the risk of breaking promises, breaking trust, and becoming people who are not integrous.

So how do we quit trying? We start doing.  And when we fail to do, we apologize.  It is better to follow through with what we say and fail than to “try” and not make any effort.

Failure is an opportunity to learn and to try again.  God does not expect perfection of His children, but He does expect diligence.  Diligence is the opposite of “trying” because it is applying a concerted effort to a task.

In a number of places in the Bible we are encouraged to work hard, but in Colossians 3:23, in particular, it states, “Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for human masters” (NIV).

So what is it you need to give up trying? Let us know in the comments below!