What Does the Bible Say About Quitting?
Not much. The word “quit” is transliterated rarely in the scriptures – KJV (five times), NASB (once), NIV (nada). More commonly the Bible uses “cease” or “stop” instead. These words fail to convey the phrase and topic of today’s inspiration email, however. “I cease” just doesn’t have the same impact when walking away from a job or some other commitment.
Ever since I was a child, I was taught not to quit. This was essentially meant to teach me not to give up, give in, walk away or lose heart. It was all about perseverance. And this is surely a topic replete in God’s word.
Galatians 6:9 says it this way: “Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up.”
The Bible addresses perseverance often because humans are tempted to quit often. Our national culture has made it much easier to quit than press on. In fact, on average, two million Americans quit their jobs each month – each month! (Really, it’s true, look it up)
So Why Do People Quit So Much
This actually tells a positive story about our economy. It says that wages are returning to a healthy norm, available jobs are very high and technology has provided a way to find these jobs faster and easier than ever.
People quit their jobs for many reasons. In a collection of research accessible through many online business publications, these are the top reasons why people quit:
- Poor relationship with the boss
- Boring or unchallenging work
- Bad co-worker relationships
- Lack of independence
- Company financial instability
- Low wage growth or promotion opportunities
- Excessive overtime
At first glance these are all very good reasons to hit the road. You have probably even experienced one or more of these situations in your own career. And if you have a desired skill set, finding a new position was probably not that hard.
So here’s a question to consider: What if God actually wanted you to stay and work things out?
Should I stay or Should I Go?
Do you have a bad boss? Do you make low wages? Do you work a boatload of hours each week? Are you micromanaged? Is your company doing poorly in the marketplace? Are you underpaid? Is your co-worker out to ruin you?
Why not figure out a solution other than quitting? Really…why not?
The quick answer is probably the best answer: It is much easier to quit than to persevere. This is a true statement especially in this economic climate. This might be your chance to address something in your spiritual state of mind that can only be learned by staying. You may even be developing a quitter’s attitude.
It’s one thing to quit a job. It’s another thing entirely to be a quitter. I won’t give you a scale or survey or measurement to determine whether if you have slipped over the line and have become a quitter. I will, however, share the symptoms of a quitter-attitude and a scripture that applies.
Symptoms of a Quitter Mentality
- Holds negative outlook on their job or company (10 of the 12 spies in Numbers 13:31)
- Looks for excuses (Those who refused the invitation to the great banquet in Luke 14:15-24)
- Tends to blame others (Ahab blamed Elijah for Israel’s trouble in 1 Kings 18:17-18)
- Refuses to face problems (Jonah ran away in Jonah 1:1-3)
- Chooses to avoid decision making (Lot wanted to stay in Sodom in Genesis 19:15-16)
- Gives up under pressure (The rocky soil in Matthew 13:20,21)
I’m not recommending you stay in your job and suffer through it. It might be the right thing to leave. What I am asking is that you consider these symptoms and determine if any of them are your reasons for leaving.
If one or more are present in your heart, staying will pave the way for tremendous growth. And you can trust that God will see you through it.