“If it looks like a duck, walks, like a duck, quacks like a duck, then, it’s a duck!” (If you’ve ever heard this saying, I’ll bet I can guess your age.) Well, I remember my father saying this to us when we were young, and I really didn’t understand the wisdom in this trite saying until much later. So often, we don’t want to believe what we see, hear and know. We want to ignore the Spirit, giving us discernment because we want what we want more than we want the truth. Sometimes, we think that if we can just have it all—things will be better than we could have ever imagined. The only thing is, usually, there are things and/or people that we must let go of before we can move forward.
Most of us have been in at least one bad relationship. It doesn’t matter if it’s a romantic one or platonic, but something inside kept telling us that things weren’t right. Of course, in order for it to turn into a bad relationship, we stayed in it too long. We wanted things to work because we thought (or desperately want to believe that) it wasn’t what it really was. We didn’t want to believe the truth. However, when our hope and expectations are misplaced, we always get a negative result. The longer we stay in the bad relationship, the more entangled we get in the negative consequences, which can be lifelong, in some cases.
Sometimes, we refuse to let go of things that are destroying or tearing us down. Whether it’s a bad job, addiction, or unhealthy behavior, when we hold us to what we think we need and want and can’t live without, we not only stunt our growth, but propel our own destruction. This is all, of course, common sense, and usually, it’s so easy to identify it in other people, but turning the magnifying glass on myself hasn’t been so easy. There are relationships and behaviors that I’ve had to let go of.
One key thing that has given me the strength to let go of things has been to shift my focus to God. Instead of being tricked into meeting the needs and desires that are in me, I try to make a habit of learning what He wants for me. His Word lets me know what He has for me. 3 John 1:2 says, “Beloved, I wish above all things that thou mayest prosper and be in health, even as thy soul prospereth.” Jeremiah 29:11 tells us, “For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, saith the LORD, thoughts of peace, and not of evil, to give you an expected end.” Verses like these remind me to place all of my hope and expectation in Him, not people and things. I trust God to meet my needs and God-given desires through whatever means necessary. He is able and all-sufficient.
When we trust Him totally, we don’t have to worry about being in dead-end relationships and unproductive actions. God is our way out. One of my favorite scriptures says, “Blessed is the man who trusts in the Lord and whose trust is the Lord. For he will be like a tree planted by the water, that extends its roots by a stream and will not fear when the heat comes; but its leaves will be green, and it will not be anxious in a year of drought nor cease to yield fruit” (Jeremiah 17:7). We can’t let go of negative relationships and behaviors the right way, unless we put all of our hope, trust, and faith in God.
Believe what God is showing you about that unhealthy relationship. He’s not showing you to destroy you. He’s showing you to save you. He wants you to live the best life—better than the one you could ever imagine for yourself!
I’ve decided to go all the way. I’ve decided to let go of any and everything that’s holding me back from the life that God has for me. No more fear! God is all-sufficient, all-powerful, and all-knowing. He is able!