Stories that Matter

Will You Give It Up?

Reading through my blog posts lately, I had a thought. Wow, this is depressing. Okay, yeah, that was my thought, but I kind of giggled afterward. Not just because it’s true, but because it’s been so much a part of my journey of late. All these challenges, battles and trials, the wondering, the waiting.

200480427-001 And sometimes it’s hard isn’t it, to sit and wait, to know that this is all you can do. Your only option. You’ve done everything else and then some, and now … now?

Will You Give It Up? 

I can see you, pressing your lips together, curling into that tight ball, putting your hands over your ears. Because I’ve been there too. And not so long ago. And when you’re there, in that state, that panicked end of the road can’t take another step state … this is not the question you want to hear.


But maybe it’s the question you need to answer. 

I don’t know your story. I don’t know what it is you’re holding so tight to. What that thing is that means so much that you think you might just die if it doesn’t happen. Well, you won’t. You might feel like that now, but take it from me, you won’t.

Sometimes it’s the very things we think we need the most that keep us from loving the things we already have.

Because we get caught up in the whole cycle of whywhy isn’t this happening, why isn’t that email showing up, why aren’t I good enough, and so on and so forth. Why can be a constructive and necessary question, but it can also trip us up. Because sometimes there aren’t answers. And sometimes the ones that come don’t make sense.

Will You Give It Up? 

It still rings in my ears. The day I heard it. The question that threw me on my back and pinned me there until I had to answer. And by that point I knew there was only one answer I could give. Yes. Y. E. S. Because I’d been holding on, holding tight, satisfied in my stubbornness that somehow I – me, myself and I, because I’m all that and a bag of chips – could magically make this thing work out. Uh, no. Sorry to disappoint you, self, but you don’t have that kind of power. And clutching tight and even hiding it behind your back because you’ve said you’ve let it go a million times over already, yeah, that doesn’t work. People know you too well.


God knows you too well. 

And the crazy thing is, He waits. He waits and waits and waits until you’re finally spent of tears and done with the screaming and there’s nothing left to do except hand the thing over. Simple obedience. And if that’s not an oxymoron I don’t know what is. But then what? If there’s nothing left to wait for, nothing more to fight for, what? What am I supposed to do now?

Try living.


Yeah, it’s a crazy concept. But it’s kind of amazing, the freedom in that. The giving it up. Because you’re not dragged down anymore, right? You’re not lugging around that rusty ball and chain or carting all that crap on your back … you’re free … oh, man, do you know what that feels like? Can you even imagine it?


And sometimes … sometimes when you’re dancing in the delight of truly knowing … really experiencing the miracle of life to the full … sometimes the strangest things happen.

And God laughs in delight at your astonishment.


To be continued …



  1. Ann Lacy Ellison on April 17, 2015 at 11:10 pm

    Some good thoughts. I have found that letting go of something that I am trying to hold on to and do under my own power gives God the freedom to work in it and the result is so much better I could have ever imagined.

    • Cathy West on April 22, 2015 at 9:27 am

      Yes, Ann! That’s it exactly!

  2. aschmeisser on April 19, 2015 at 4:40 pm

    Tempting to leave things go, especially now. Things have gotten a bit of a “go tell the Spartans” ambiance.

    The only resolve I can muster is to draw a line, here.

    I’be lost too much already, and I am tired of stepping back.

    This, now, I will maintain, and I am going to carry my remaining hopes and dreams out of this crucible of pain and degradation, into the sunlight of a new day. Or…

    Or nothing. Fight on, every minute, into Forever.

    • Cathy West on April 22, 2015 at 9:27 am

      That’s right, Andrew. Sometimes we have to keep fighting!

  3. Jessica White on April 20, 2015 at 12:14 pm

    I smiled at this post because my situation is almost the exact opposite. I want to let go of the hard things God is calling me to do. I’m calling this my Jacob year. I refuse to let go of God even if that means holding on to things that are hard and unpleasant.

    • Cathy West on April 22, 2015 at 9:23 am

      That’ll work too, Jessica! 🙂

  4. Kiersti on April 20, 2015 at 3:39 pm

    This is really good, Cathy–thanks for sharing!

    • Cathy West on April 22, 2015 at 9:22 am

      Thanks for reading, Kiersti!

  5. SuchATimeAsThis on May 16, 2015 at 6:59 pm

    Read your great news on Beyond the Borders. Congratulations! I love this post. I’ve only started this particular journey myself, and I’m blessed by your perseverance. I’m also looking forward to reading your books! God bless and again, well done!

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