Calling It Quits

Every day you have a decision to make. Do I carry on or do I call it quits?

It’s something I think about and I’m sure you do to. Maybe not consciously but it’s there subconsciously.

Picture of Mike Mains and the Branches at Cornerstone

Mike Mains of Mike Mains and the Branches saying “Thank You Cornerstone”

Many factors play into the decision to continue the work or call it quits.

  • The impact you’re having
  • The income you’re bringing in
  • The quality of relationships you’re able to build and maintain.

In May I read a message I thought I would never hear.

July would be the last year of, what I consider, the best Christian music festival, Cornerstone.

Actually, I lie when I say it was the best Christian music festival. It was much more than that.

Cornerstone Festival brought together the best in Christian art, music, teaching, faith, fellowship and more.

It was a community. It was an experience. And for some it was a lifestyle.

Year after year for the past 29 years they have brought together countless people looking for more.

I had the pleasure of attending 5 or 6 of these years and always left feeling challenged and strengthened. They always gave you knowledge and wisdom to chew on well after you left.

Now what does this have to do with leadership?

It goes to show

  • You have to evaluate where you are. Over time change happens. Demographics shift. Movements fade. People stop showing up.

    Take the time to evaluate your situation and see what needs to be done. Make the necessary changed. If that doesn’t work, is it time to call it quits?

  • You need to know when to call it quits. It’s painful. It will hurt people. It will change people’s lives. But you can’t continue digging yourself into a hole. Decide when too much is too much.
  • You still can look back on the experience with a smile. While it brings sadness in closing out a chapter in your life, you still have the memories of all the great times you’ve had. Nothing can take that away. Keep them and cherish them. And move on.

It’s a hard decision to make. And yet sometimes you have to make the decision to call it quits. Will you be able to say you’re done when the time comes?

Question: Have you had a ministry, business, or other thing you had to call it quits on? How did the decision affect you? Please share your thoughts in the comment section below.

Image provided with permission from

Please note: I reserve the right to delete comments that are offensive or off-topic.

  • Knowing when to pull the plug may be one the hardest things to do. Stopping something you have poured time and energy into is not easy at all. But it may be beneficial. I did that four years ago. I was good in my position and could have continued. But by stopping and changing jobs, I was able to grow.

    • Thanks for sharing your story Larry. Making that decision to quit has to be one of the hardest ones we’ll ever make.

  • Yes, and I recently did it this past July. I had to leave my job, it was not productive to my growth and I felt stagnant. I was growing in other areas of my life but that was one area where i was not growing. So I had to make a drastic move and it included taking that leap almost everyone is afraid to make. Entrepreneurship.

    • Awesome Lincoln! That’s a scary leap to take for a lot of people. Has this experience quitting helped you grow?

      • Lets call it stretching for now. I do know that I am much more relaxed now, and God is opening doors.

  • When I was a youth leader at the church I served at in Portland OR we had to quit doing some ineffective fundraisers.

    One example is when we bought 100 pink flamingos and planned on having different people give money and then we would flamingo a persons house from the church (of their choosing). We tried to sell it for a while but no one wanted to do it, so we called it quiets. Let’s just say it was not one of our best ideas. I think the church still have those flamingos some where in storage.

    ps. Never do any type of fundraising that has pink flamingos involved.

    • I actually thought they were live flamingos..till i read the church storage

    • Oh boy! I’ve heard of fundraisers like the flamingo one. That has to be a hard one to do.

  • Lets just say that I am reluctant-quitter. Always thinking there’s another angle we are missing, something better we can introduce. Never easy to let go.

    I used to organize singles events – picnics, games, cook-outs, dinners, hikes and such. Over time the number of men coming to the events dropped. But the number of ladies didn’t change, sometimes spiked. Something needed to change to get the men back but took us a long time to figure things out and begin implement changes. Things have since changed (beginning with me leaving!) and from the reports i get, things are getting better.

    • Quitting can be hard but it could be the catalyst that is needed for great change.

  • My bread business at one point had 6 people and brought in great income but it wasn’t my calling and it was dragging down my life. I had to sell the business and for the last two plus years have worked for one guy, it was a good decision to quit.

    • That had to be a tough decision Kimanzi. But you’re now able to work towards your dreams, right?

  • jeff

    I called it quits on a small group of 3 guys that I fellowshiped with for many months, sometimes 2 to 4 times a week. Some of it was just getting old, because it was just the three of us. It may have been partly my fault that I preferred to have a small group. Something about hanging out in the evening in an unscheduled manner eventually made me insane. I had to move on to something more scheduled and reliable and something where my interests could really be put to use.

    • Sometimes it’s all about finding that right mix for you. Has the change been helpful?

      • jeff

        The change has given me more time for creativity and doing things that I find difficult to do when spending too much time predicting whether my friends will show up. Of course, the relative void has also pushed me into new group settings, where there is a greater pool of people, which means a greater likelihood that interests could be aligned, but also a temptation to go along with the crowd.

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