In Others’ Words: Letting Go

Growing up, I never quite conquered the monkey bars.

Seriously, I’m pretty certain I never once made it all the way across from one end to the other. Sometimes I’d get to the middle and just hang there until I let go and dropped.

But there’s the lesson hidden in monkey bars: Life is all about letting go.

I’ve grieved some experiences in my life for years. Years and years and years. Some of those experiences were caused by the choices of others … and some of those experiences were caused by my own choices.

There came a time when the very best thing I could do — for myself, for others, for healing — was to let go.

Stop mourning.

Walk away.

Close the door.

Let go of the monkey bars and leave the playground.

Don’t get me wrong: I’m all for seeking counsel and for pursuing healing. But sometimes God works his greatest healing when he says, “Enough. Move on. Move forward. You’ve done all I’ve asked you to do. All that is humanely possible.”

And that’s when I let go … and leave it in God’s hands of grace.

In Others’ Words: I so value your part in the conversation … when have you let go of the monkey bars and moved forward — moved past a painful experience?

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17 Comments

  1. March 6, 2013, 6:53 am   /  Reply

    I don’t know how you consistently turn out poignant meaningful impacting blogs (much faster apparently than I ever could) but I’m thankful you do. Sorry yours yesterday on Ponderers didn’t seem to get more reads–it was a real keeper, too.
    Playgrounds? I didn’t shine there. But Workgrounds? I usually roll up my sleeves and shine. Thanks. God bless you today.

    • March 6, 2013, 7:22 am   /  Reply

      I agree, Dee. That post was wonderful!

      • Beth Vogt
        March 6, 2013, 7:25 am   /  Reply

        Thanks, Jeanne.

    • Beth Vogt
      March 6, 2013, 7:24 am   /  Reply

      🙂
      Yes, Dee, you do shine in so, so many places!

  2. March 6, 2013, 7:07 am   /  Reply

    I didn’t have the greatest time in middle school. Got teased and rejected and all that. I eventually had to move on and tell myself the truth: that I’m precious because God loves me, not because I’m cool or uncool, or pretty or unpretty.

    • Beth Vogt
      March 6, 2013, 7:24 am   /  Reply

      I am so thankful that I’ve learned to hear the Truth from the One who speaks Truth, Lindsay.

  3. March 6, 2013, 7:24 am   /  Reply

    I loved the monkey bars in elementary school, never touched ’em in junior high. Figuratively speaking though, it took years before I could let go of the monkey bars of rejection and walk away from the lies my mind told me. God has slowly been re-writing his truths over the lies and this makes it easier to let go of those bars more quickly.

    • Beth Vogt
      March 6, 2013, 7:25 am   /  Reply

      One thing about monkey bars: As a mom, I always enjoyed helping my kiddos conquer them.

  4. March 6, 2013, 7:33 am   /  Reply

    Monkey bars…no problem. Feeling like I was a mistake…huge problem. So thankful I found One who said I wasn’t a mistake and filled me with His Spirit. Great post, Beth. Now I’m off to read yesterday’s post. I think I’ve lost track of days. Thought today was Tuesday. lol

  5. March 6, 2013, 8:09 am   /  Reply

    I got kicked off a mission team bound for Brazil , before it left town. It was totally because the 2nd in command disliked me from the previous year. I mean, DISLIKED me. D-I-S-L-I-K-E-D me. I was slightly out-spoken about his passive aggressive manipulation, oh and he was a liar who was caught lying to 30 people.

    It took years and years to unfurl my fingers from the anger.
    Then I realized he probably never gave my hurt a second thought and had long forgotten his actions. And he didn’t care about one “poquito peone”. I was nothing.
    But, that was only in his eyes.

    God knew my hurt, and years later, when I stepped off the plane onto South American soil again, I cried like a baby. My director? What an amazing, Godly, focused, kind and loving man. A total servant. And the mission trip? Well, I’ve done 4.
    God is good.
    Dios es BUENO!

  6. March 6, 2013, 8:38 am   /  Reply

    Love the analogy. I’m visual so it helps to have something in my head that shows me how to let go and move on … something that says “Next.” Monkey bars are perfect because it’s painful to just hang there.

  7. Katie Beth
    March 6, 2013, 9:41 am   /  Reply

    Thank you for being so consistently transparent. You are one of my biggest role models and I am so glad that I have learned how to let go with God’s strength and encouragement from you and a few others.
    Love you!

  8. March 6, 2013, 10:40 am   /  Reply

    There came a time after college when I very intentionally made a decision to let go (after a long time of stubborness!). It was right, but oh man, it was hard. And yet, it opened the door for God to move in my life in a pretty big way. I found new comfort and joy in Him…and a peace that I wouldn’t trade for the world. I sometimes purposely go back to my prayer journal from that year…just to recapture the closeness I felt to God during that time.

  9. March 6, 2013, 11:10 am   /  Reply

    I hated the monkey bars, and I am amazed my children can cross them with ease. But when you think about monkey bars, if you don’t move you just hang there, before long your arms start to ache and you notice everyone else on the playground is having fun. Hm…made I should get moving, either let go or move on. I had to do this just this weekend with a negative comment that was made to me (I am a worship leader, need I say more) and held on to the words that were spoken too long. I have let go now, and I will continue to worship the way God leads me. I will become even more undignified than this!!!

  10. March 6, 2013, 11:28 am   /  Reply

    I had a sad friendship loss in hs/college that I held onto for years. My husband even questioned when I’d let it go. I’m not all that great at that b/c I care so intensely. It was a good lesson. Hard to go through, but a good lesson.

  11. Bernadette DesChamps
    March 6, 2013, 10:55 pm   /  Reply

    Letting go…
    This has to be one of the Top 10 most important life skills “bar” none…as is making puns, which falls under the category of laughter.

    Seriously, though. I have found life to be a whole series of letting go moments… choices… seasons. And every time I let go my hands are open to receive something new and beautiful from the Lord.

    Letting go can mean different things: forgive, don’t take yourself so seriously, move on, release an expectation… Whatever it’s appearance, it has been one of those “weights” or “hindrances” that I’ve needed to cast aside so I could run my race with perseverance, fixing my eyes on Jesus…not on others, or myself.

    What have I let go? The pain of not having the “daddy” my heart longed for. That wretched black hole of forsakenness as a child of divorce. Two babies at 12 weeks gestation. The thought that I had a right to have a perfect husband. Three children who flew the nest… There are so many more, but the one most key to them all has been letting go of fear’s ugly claw. We were companions for far too long.

  12. March 6, 2013, 11:17 pm   /  Reply

    Hi, Beth; What a great post. I visit often but don’t always think of something to say. I think the monkey bars is an accurate metaphor in many ways. Letting go of the bar to swing to the next is just WHAT YOU DO. It isn’t giving up, it isn’t judging the bar you’ve released…it’s just HOW IT IS DONE TO GET FURTHER AHEAD. I’ve had to do this a number of times because I think I am waiting till I feel okay about the situation and have had to learn (and remind myself) that may never happen. I have to release it without being okay with it. BTW-I was AWESOME at those bars. I could swing and skip two to get to the next one. My issues on the playground have to do with my inability to do a cartwheel.

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