When is Enough, Enough?

Jen’s Gem:  Know when to walk away.

This week, my daughter did something she’s never done throughout her entire academic career, perhaps even her life. It was a big decision and one she did not take lightly. 

At the beginning of her spring term at college, her intention was to attend grad school. She signed up for an elective  graduate level class that would give her some insight into the program she was looking to pursue. The 100% online course began about a week ago.

Right from the get go, the workload was intense. She was spending hours upon hours on assignments at the expense of her other classes.

“It’s too much Mom. My other work is suffering and I’m not even learning anything,” she said. “This class is completely stressing me out. I’m dropping it.”

Years ago, I walked away from a lucrative corporate job because my mental health was at risk. It was a difficult decision, but it was the right one for me. 

“I’ve never quit anything, Mom. I always push through and figure it out.”

She’s right. My daughter is not a quitter. She perseveres through trials like no one I’ve ever seen. She always figures things out. She always rises above no matter what. 

Yet sometimes we have to walk away. 

Jesus told His disciples this very thing as they went about spreading the Gospel if they ever came upon people who did not want to hear it. 

“And whoever will not receive you nor hear your words, when you depart from that house or city, shake off the dust from your feet (Matthew 10:14 NKJV).

Now I don’t believe this means we give up without trying our best.  Just because something is hard doesn’t mean we throw up our hands and quit after five minutes. We do have to give it the “old college try” as they say.

Additionally, we need to “count the costs” as it says in Luke 14:26-33. As my daughter and I discussed the situation, she outlined the “costs” of dropping the class:

1. It was not a requirement for graduation.
2. She had decided to forgo grad school and instead go into the workplace.
3. Her other class work was suffering.
4. Her quality of life was being compromised.

Making tough decisions is tough! We don’t want to be wrong. We don’t want to make a mistake. However, here is what I’ve learned in my walk with God about making decisions.

Even if we make the wrong one, God is with us. He will even use this “bad decision” for good. (Romans 8:28) He will take all of the muck and mire of our lives and turn it into something great. I’m living proof of this. 

You see, God knows every right and wrong choice we will make before we even make it. He knows exactly how it’s all going to turn out. And we know that it will turn out well because the Bible tells us in Jeremiah 29:11 that His plans for us are good and will give us a life of hope.

So we never have to be afraid. Of course, we don’t want to be willy nilly about our decision making process. We pray. We seek counsel from wise people. We seek God’s Word because whatever situation we are facing, therein lies the answer.

Jesus didn’t die for us to live a life of chaos and confusion. God is not the author of that. Satan is. If there is chaos and confusion in our lives, look to the enemy as the cause. God  loves you and wants only the very best for you (John 3:16).

Today is Palm Sunday. The day that Jesus rode into Jerusalem on the way to His crucifixion. The very people who prayed and begged for a Savior made the decision to kill Him.

However, look what God did – three days later, Jesus rose from the dead and because of Him, we have been given the gift of forgiveness and eternal life when we choose to believe in and follow Him. Wow! Talk about a turnaround!

I’m confident that my daughter’s decision was the right one. I think she also learned a valuable lesson. We have to know our limits. We have to know our capabilities. We have to know when to say “no.” And if we have overextended ourselves, we have to take a step back and know when to say “enough is enough.”

All good things are not necessarily good for us. Sometimes we have to let go of the good, so God can make a way for the great. (Tweet This!)

PS – Funny “coincidence.” The next day, I was watching The Waltons. There was a scene where John Boy was facing the same decision about a college class. I shared this with my daughter and we both got a chuckle.

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