Everyone has days when they just want to quit.
Mothering, marriage, work, ministry — each has its own special weight — its own moments of “I just can’t keep going.”
The only way to endure?
People over process.
People over product.
I get it wrong all the time. I fall in love with my work or my ideas or my task list instead of the people I’m supposed to be loving through them. I wrap my soul around the things I need to do and the way I want to do them instead of around the hearts I’m called to serve.
It’s a path to bitter burnout.
Because the tasks will get old. The thank you won’t come. The work will get lonely. The unexpected will happen. The results may not show up for miles.
Even when it all goes right, our wins can eat us alive with self-righteousness: look what I do that others do not. And suddenly, we land back at taken for granted, wanting to walk away.
Falling in love with the people over the process and the product — the faces, the hearts, the potential, the image of God stamped on their hearts — it’s the only thing that stays and fills and sustains.
Moms with their kids.
Businesses with their customers.
Nurses with their patients.
Bosses with their employees.
Wives with their husbands.
Pastors with their people.
The people and their God.
This is the deep, hidden truth under the Bible’s claim that love never fails:
Love’s the only reason that lasts in the end.
It’s the only motivation that will never run out. Checkmarks and clean houses and projects and perfect moments fade — they are destined to be undone and redone. Work is given to sustain our bodies, not our souls; it dries up, it runs short, it cannot fill. For endurance, we must choose people over process, people over product — every moment, every hour, every day.
We must love them, and we must love them, and — when we fall down in frustration and forget — we must return to love them again.
P.S. If you are celebrating Easter this weekend, this is exactly how Jesus kept going to Calvary — for the joy of being with you He endured the cross (Hebrews 12:1-2). He chose people over the process of dying and the product of death. Be overwhelmed in His great affection for you: “…he loved them to the end.” John 13:1
If you want more joy, you have to plan for it.
Grab my free printable Daily Joy Planner page with some tips and hacks for more happy and more focus every day.