Why Did You Give Up?

What if your God wanted to know

Why you gave up

Instead of anything else?

What if he asked you

At what point in your life

You decided nothing was worth it

And you gave up fighting

For what you wanted?


What if he wanted to know

Why you didn’t forgive

Like he does?

Or love

Like he does?


If he wanted to know

If his sons death was enough

For you to treat everyone

Like they matter?


What if he wanted to know

Why your life

Meant so little to you

That you took chances

With this gift?


What if he told you

Everyone you loved

And everyone you hated

Were your brothers and sisters?


Be ready to answer the question

Of why you gave up

And remember

It has to trump

“For God so loved the world….”


5 thoughts on “Why Did You Give Up?

Add yours

  1. I’ve always tried to live as though I am reflecting on my life from my death bed. What will I be satisfied with? What will I wish I had done, or finished, or not done? I have never liked fighting, and neither do many others, yet the word “fight” is prevalent, even among pacifists. Would you consider using a word like “striving” instead of “fighting” in your poem?

    Personally, I have been amazed at how frequently the word “fight” comes up in my own mind. By making an effort to find a different word, I expand my awareness of possibilities. “Fight” presumes an adversary. “Strive” doesn’t.

    Generally speaking, I’m struck by how negative our language is: “It’s not as though . . .”, or “I don’t disagree with you,” are examples. I believe that by finding a way to speak in positive rather than negative terms, we might be able to improve the way we communicate in profound ways.

      1. Do you mean “more interesting?”

        I love diversity. I only brought up the thought about language because I’ve never heard anyone else mention it. I have long been fascinated by how the structure of our thoughts shapes our language. I believe that becoming more aware of the implications of the words we choose can give additional insight into the thoughts themselves. I “strive” to speak and write directly about “what is” rather than indirectly about “what is not” (“pacifist” rather than “non-violent,” for instance), but the language itself makes this a difficult exercise.

        The best to you, too. I love your posts, so my teeny little suggestion about choice of words is more of a general observation about a cultural bias than a personal criticism.

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