Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Sometimes You Just Need To End Things!

Life is a series of endings... And new beginnings.

The new beginnings are always great, but we often miss out on great beginnings because endings are often painful. Too often we choose to continue something we know should end, simply because we are afraid the ending might be too difficult. As a result, we often miss out on what could have been a fabulous beginning.

STOP! You don't need to keep doing that
For some people, endings are never an option. Rather than choosing to stop something that is no longer healthy, they will work themselves into exhaustion trying to solve an impossible problem.

Sometimes the truth is uncomfortable, and for that reason people are often unwilling to face it. Almost always, this type of avoidance leads to an even more uncomfortable situation or truth.

Richard Nixon learned this lesson the hard way. When the watergate scandal first broke, he could have stepped in, apologized, and ended the wrong behavior. This would have been painful. He would have needed to swallow his pride, admit wrong-doing, and indict some of his clothes friends and trusted advisors. That pain was something he was unwilling to face, so he chose continued deception over a healthy ending. Eventually, he lost everything because he wasn't willing to lose a few things.

I know this runs contrary to most "wisdom" we hear or think. But according to Necessary Endings (by Henry Cloud), "sometimes the best thing a leader or anyone else can do is give up hope in what they are currently trying." Hope often is the only thing that keeps us going... Sometimes, that is a big problem. Your hope can keep you walking a path that may have been right at some time, but is not right now, and will never be right again. It might be your hope that is keeping you from getting back on the right path.

Pruning is a process we all understand to be necessary for healthy growth. Usually it is a term reserved for gardening and nature, but occasionally Christians use it to refer to the trials God uses to grow us. Almost never, though, do we speak of pruning our own lives. Why not?

Life is full of dead-ends. Recognize them, and move on.
You don't need to succumb to the misery of going nowhere. Life's dead ends don't have to cripple you. You aren't consigned to fixing every problem you ever encounter for the rest of your life. You can choose to create your own healthy endings, to cut away the once good things that are now weighing you down. You can proactively prepare yourself for a NEW BEGINNING by making space with a necessary ending.

Of course, some will abuse this concept. We shouldn't always end things musts because they are hard. We should never break the covenants we have made with God or others simply because we have a hankering for something different. But consider this post an encouragement to look at your life. What are the the things that could end, that you could do without. How can you clean up your world to make room for some new beginnings which today are still beyond your comprehension?

Endings don't have to be bad. Sometimes, they are the best thing that could ever happen!



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