When Pursuing the Best Means Letting Go

When Pursuing the Best Means Letting Go

The other day I was in a meeting with some other leaders from church. We were discussing an outreach event we’ve held for the past three years. The event had gone fairly well, but we were discussing whether it made sense to do it again next year. In the end, we decided not to hold the event next year.

We all face difficult choices about how best to use our time and energy. We grapple with questions like:

  • Is this the most effective use of my time?
  • Is this how God wants me to serve him?
  • Could I be more effective pursuing something else?

Sometimes the answer to those questions leads to significant changes.  Sometimes, in order to pursue what is best we must give up the good things we are already doing.

Giving up good things can be hard.

We don’t like to be quitters. It can feel selfish or cowardly to walk away from a good ministry or throw in the towel on a business venture—especially when we’ve put in many hours of hard work to make them successful.

But sometimes we can’t get to Best unless we let go of Good. And sometimes what is Best for one season of our lives isn’t the Best for next season.

After our decision to drop the outreach event, the discussion at our meeting continued. We considered alternative ideas, focusing on how we might best accomplish our goals with the resources we have and the demographics of our area. We came up with preliminary plans for two other events that we hope will be more effective at reaching our community.

Will our new plans turn out better than the previous event? Only time will tell.

But we are willing to try. To evaluate. To learn from our mistakes. And to keep pushing forward.

Even when that means letting go of what we already know we can do.

Is there a good thing in your life that you are afraid to step away from, even though you sense a new direction? Maybe it is time to consider letting go.

About Lisa Betz

Lisa Betz writes from an empty nest perched on a wooded Pennsylvania hillside. When not volunteering at the school, church or library, she writes about life, both now and two-thousand years ago.


  1. Enjoyed this piece, Lisa. This is something we all need to pray about and incorporate into our lives. Thanks for sharing!

  2. And it’s often not easy to do, is it? A lesson I am still trying to learn.

  3. I wish more churches were as wise as yours, Lisa. So often, we miss God’s best because we’re hanging onto something that the church has “always done.”

  4. Janet K Brown says:

    Love this, Lisa. God must be speaking to me. The pastor on Sunday preached a lot of the same thing. “Unless the Lord builds the house, it’s built in vain.” Letting go is hard to do.

  5. Those things a group has “always done” are the hardest of all, aren’t they? But our God often has something newer and better, if we’re brave enough to try.

  6. Laurie Driesen says:

    I love your post – it’s such an important subject — so many people think that because something is good, they should do it. But being overloaded is not good. We do need to let go of good things at times. Thanks for writing about something so important and making it so easy to understand!

  7. Tracy Higley speaks pretty clearly on this subject in her new book, Impactivity. Letting go is rarely easy, but it is often important if we really want to make an impact instead of merely being busy.

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