When I was going through a very tough time. My deepest valley, one of my very best “non-fair weather friends” said to me, “Don’t give up. God has great plans for you.” He said when he was young he was in a wrestling match with a friend. The friend had him in a very tough pin. My friend said to him, “I give up, I give up.” His friend looked him in the eye and said, “don’t every give up.” “Whatever you do in life don’t give up.” From that day, my best friend never gave up on anything or anyone. He gives everything in his life all he’s got.
I have a rather very good memory. Near photographic. That memory has helped me academically and professionally. However it can be both a blessing and somewhat of a curse at times. I don’t usually forget most things in my life, good or bad.
I remember running in a track meet in High School. I was a long distance runner. One particular meet we didn’t have our other long distance runners with us at the time and I was elected to run the 800, 1600 and 3200. The challenging thing is that they were pretty much back to back. Although I was a fair runner, this endeavor would almost take super human strength, and endurance.
I ran the 800 and did great. Then it was the 1600 and I did well. However when the 3200 immediately followed, I was drained. The first to 800 (1/2 mile), and 1600 (1 mile) sucked up my energy and I was exhausted. It didn’t help that I skipped breakfast, and had next to nothing for lunch. Two boys from an opposing team ended up lapping me and I was immensely embarrassed. More than that, I was completely exhausted, my legs were giving in and cramping, my lungs were even aching. I gave up 1 lap short. I’ll never forget that. I gave up 1 lap short!. Just 1 more lap I would of made it! I wouldn’t have won, I was still beaten by a lap. But I would of finished.
The next track practice, my coach ran the film and actually called me Superman for even trying all three races back to back. I appreciated his comments and humor. Although I still regretted giving up and was still embarrassed.
From that point on I never gave up on anything, or anyone. I put all I had into my career, and my goals and achieved remarkable results. I was top in my fields. Achieved my black belt and won my first martial arts tournament by knock out. I’ve been a Sales Manager, Market Development Director, Buyer, Senior Technical Account Manager, even a VP Business Banker. I’ve bought 3 homes, and built one. I miraculously was healed from two encounters to what was thought to be cancer, a very bad car wreck and two motorcycle wrecks…. I gave everything I had to what I was doing and didn’t give up. I “shook it off” and got back up and pressed on.
However during the Great Recession, I was downsized out of my job, then was shorted out of a business “partnership” forcing me to start my own business(s), lost my Grandfather to whom I was helping to recover from a broken hip, lost my cousin to cancer which she had to say goodbye to two young children to which I was helping care for, downsized my home then lost my marriage, finances devastated and my health declined greatly all within 6 months. My feet and ankles became so bad it was difficult to even walk – It took a long time of physical therapy, braces, and pain medication to manage. I also then suffered from anxiety, shame and great sadness. Sometimes it’s just hard to be strong. I felt I failed everything, and everyone, even God. Which are lies from the devil.
However two very good Christian friends didn’t give up on me. Neither did my family. My Christian friends prayed for me, one in particular kept in constant contact with me, helped me with many things, and said and did anything to bring me a smile, and encouragement. God also didn’t give up on me. He was there in my valley, and true friends were rooting me on and standing by my side.
Making it through those tough times, and with help from God and true “non-fair weather” friends, I feel stronger than I have in many years. God didn’t give up on me, Jesus Christ didn’t give up in dying for us so that we may have eternal life.
“The Lord shall fight for you, and ye shall hold your peace.” Exodus 14:14
Was there a time you wanted to “give up?” Maybe you are at a point that you feel like giving up now. I say don’t give up. There is always hope and the greatest gift you have is your life. Remember you have just one life and God wants to use you, and see you happy and at peace. He wants great things for you. So never give up. Never give up.