April 22, 2019

Ever Want to Give Up?

April 22, 2019


John 21:1-3
This weekend’s reading: John 21:15-17


Have you ever felt like giving up?  Have you ever tried breaking a habit, stop a sinful action, keep New Year’s resolutions, or keep a Lenten commitment, only to discover you failed?
When Peter says in verse three, “I’m going fishing,” there is a nuance of, “I give up.  Why keep on trying?  I keep failing.  I’m going back to my old life of fishing.” 
Peter tried so hard to follow Jesus.  Even in John 13:37 Peter said to Jesus that, no matter what, he would go with Jesus wherever.  Later, Peter denied Jesus three times.
Several times during my devotional times, I’ve said I will give my life totally to God’s service only to find within one hour, I’m not.  Many times, after feeling cleansed from sin after Holy Communion, I realize I have new sinful attitudes, even before worship ends.
Why keep on trying to follow Jesus when I know I’m going to fail through sinful attitudes and actions?
Jesus didn’t give up on Peter, even though Peter gave up on Jesus.  Jesus came to him.  Jesus does not give up on us.


  • In what ways have you tried following Jesus only to give up trying?
  • When have you given up only to discover later that Jesus hadn’t given up on you?
  • Is some of this going on right now in your life?
  • In what ways is Jesus coming to you right now?


  • Make a list and talk about things your family members tried to do and did not succeed?
  • Make a list of things in which your family and friends have helped you succeed after struggling?
  • Is there anything in your family members’ lives that make them want to give up?
  • Discuss how God might be using the rest of your family and friends to help you succeed?
  • Discuss how God still loves you no matter how often you fail?


Most loving gracious, Lord.  You know the many times I’ve tried to quit bad habits, change attitudes, and stop sinning, and failed.  You know better than me the number of times I’ve rededicated my life to you only to fail again.  Lord, you never give up on me.  Lord, help me in the down times to simply trust your love and your presence, even when I feel like giving up.  In your gracious name, I pray. Amen.