It’s easy to give up. Really it is. It’s easy to be overwhelmed. It’s easy to throw the towel in because it feels as though anything you do is worthless. It’s easy to quit because pushing forward just seems too difficult, painful, or like you are up against a horde in opposition.
Go ahead quit. I won’t stop you. I will remind you of this though: Those that are opposed to you, that attack you, that push you, that push opposite of whatever it is you are fighting for – yeah, those people – they aren’t going to quit. Why should they? They assume they are right. And by you quitting, it just confirms how right they are in their own minds.
Because people who are right (or think they are anyway), who are dedicated to a cause/idea/belief, don’t quit. They push ahead regardless of the situation. They keep going. They push forward in spite of the odds.
Criticism can suck. Being called names can hurt. Being attacked behind your back can wound you.
There are plenty of people who would like nothing better than to see you fail, to call it quits, to laugh at you for giving up. There are plenty of people who will rip you a new one, who will attack what you stand for and when you push back will claim they are the victims. There are plenty of people who will keep pushing, completely ignoring whatever you say because they don’t really care and aren’t open to discussion. They believe they are right – why would they listen to another voice.
So what do you do when you face this?
I wrote the following response in an ELCA church page in response to someone complaining about an LCMS pastor’s uniformed critique of the ELCA: “Here’s what I learned long ago – not everyone is going to like you. Some are going to hate you. So what. If they attack you, there’s a good chance you are doing something right – people don’t attack something/ideas/beliefs/organizations that are irrelevant. If they attack you, do it more – that way they are focused on your message and not on their crappy ideology/theology/ideas. They attack that which they perceive as a threat. Your job isn’t to get everyone to like you. It’s to proclaim. Some will follow, some won’t. So what. Who’s next that needs to hear the Gospel or who’s next that I can work with in spite of the differences between us.”
In other words, why are you wasting time and energy on people who do not have your best interest in mind? Yes, they think they are saving your soul/life/career/etc. Just because they think so, doesn’t make it true. They are looking out for their own interests and dealing with their own brokenness and trying to taking out on you. You can’t fix them. Leave them in God’s hands and move on and keep plugging away. And when someone asks you what you think about their latest comments/ideas/thoughts – tell the truth – You don’t really care because they aren’t helping you to expand the kingdom of God. You don’t really care because you don’t waste time on people who are more interested in being right and tearing down churches. You don’t care because you only have so much time and energy and you use it to push forward. That’s what you care about. That’s what your attention is on. That’s why you don’t quit. That’s why you keep going.