If I Get it All Together, How Long Do I Have to Keep it Up?

This get-it-all-together thing can drive you right off the cliff of crazy if you let it.

If I get it all together, how long do I have to keep it up? Nothing will dampen faith and spiritual vitality faster than running yourself ragged trying to get it all right.Is it a once-and-for-all kind of thing, or do I have to somehow sustain this coveted image? Seriously, how long do I have to keep it up?

These are things we need to know. . . !

To be righteous is to be right, in a state of rightness. It is being as God created you to be, as you are designed to live. We talked about that here. 


This get-it-all-together living is all about how well we perform. It’s an exhausting work of the flesh to try and try and try and try to reach this undefinable get-it-together standard.


Nothing will dampen faith and spiritual vitality faster than running yourself ragged trying to get it all right.


Self-effort will never get it all right.


Working to be right by our own efforts is really self-righteousness. So much of the Christian life is learning to understand and live in our God-given identity rather than simply trying to manage self better.

. . . he who abides in Me and I in him, he bears much fruit, for apart from Me you can do nothing. —John 15:5

We agree with this truth and then keep on trying to get-it-all-together on our own.

I need God to transform my thinking when . . .

  • I worry about what other’s think.
  • I react to criticism with anger or hurt.
  • I lecture myself about my mistakes.
  • I am defensive or hyper-sensitive.
  • I try to control other people.
  • I grieve my failures.
  • I fear rejection.
  • I create lists to improve myself.
  • I define myself based on what others say.
  • I believe I’m not enough.
  • I judge myself or others.
  • I feel like a disappointment to God.
  • I say, “I’ll never be ____ enough.”
  • I strive to prove my worth.
  • I relate to God out of fear or guilt.
  • I find fault with everything I do.
  • I wonder if God would love me more if I ____.
  • I worry about getting it all together! 

There’s just WAY too much me in this list.

Way. Too. Much.

You can’t go two ways at once.

We can’t hang on to the get-it-together life of the flesh and walk in the Spirit. We can’t rely on self to get-it-all-together and experience freedom in Christ at the same time.

Believe me, I’ve tried.


I’ve tried to keep my house clean, raise amazing kids, and love my husband well. I’ve worked hard to pray, love God, study the Bible, teach Sunday school, and on an on it goes.


For heaven’s sake, by self-effort I can’t even keep the kitchen counters clean!


We have to make a choice.

Living by faith is making a thousand little choices to trust God, to believe truth, and depend on Christ moment by moment. Relying on Christ rather than self keeps faith fresh for this moment.


The power of recognition.

Choosing to let go of self-effort to get-it-all-together begins with awareness of our thoughts and motivations.


To be honest, I don’t begin every task thinking, “What’s the condition of my heart? Who am I relying on?”


Slowly, I’m recognizing when I’m trying to get-it-all together rather than trusting God to put-it-all-together. 

When I realize I’ve given way to this get-me-together thinking, I begin to think and respond differently.


And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. . .  Romans 12:2a


Instead of worrying about what others think, I choose to rely on Christ. “Lord, I’m depending on you to do this well, and I’ll trust you with what other’s think.”


Rather than fear rejection, I remind myself that I’m accepted by God. My prayer changes from “Help me do better” to “Lord, I trust you with this relationship. I rely on you to show me what to do.”


Which would you rather experience, the try-hard life of self-effort or the gift of righteousness in Christ?

Isn’t it time to stop all the trying to-get-it-all together?

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Linking up in these blogging communities: Coffee for Your Heart, #TellHisStory#PorchStories, Tune in Thursday, and Grace and Truth.





  1. Ginger, you’re so right, we really can’t do it all on our own no matter how hard we try! I know that it can be hard for me to really trust in God and let Him bring it all together in His time. Just a reminder, I host a linkup called #TuneInThursday and it goes live at 3AM PST, I’d love for you to link this post, it’s great!

  2. Wry encouraging Ginger! So needed to read this today!

  3. Thanks for the thoughtful post! That flesh is always looking for opportunity to rear it’s ugly head and we so easily fall into the temptation of needing to perform to do well. I know I do!
    It’s even caused me some health issues so right now I’m very consciously practicing resting in His righteousness, and in His capability, and allowing myself to rest and sleep. I was so busy trying to perform and do “everything” that I was always short on sleep. Not good!
    Thank you for sharing this really important message and bless you as you keep doing so!

    • Ginger Harrington

      Jessica, I hope your time of rest and recovery refreshes you. Your comments show our practical need to set boundaries and take rest seriously. It’s so easy to keep pushing forward thinking, “I’ll rest tomorrow.” Too often tomorrow only brings more of the same busyness and pressure. Praying God brings fresh vitality to you!

  4. Trusting rather than trying! Amen! I can get so down on myself for things I don’t do/can’t seem to get around to. I think I need to lay aside SuperWoman and trust Christ instead.
    (So glad I’m not the only one who can’t keep the kitchen counter clean!)

  5. Pingback: Getting It All Together {with linkup}

  6. Thanks for this. It’s just the reminder I needed today.

  7. Oh my. This had me laughing. Been there, done that. Still do. Self effort just doesn’t get me far though. Great reminder for my day. My time. My to-do list. Oh, I mean God’s time. God’s to-do list. God’s day.

    • Ginger Harrington

      Theresa, love the way you rephrased “God’s time, Gods to-do list, and God’s day.” I’m tickled you both laughed and benefitted from this post. I’m always grateful when God gives me humorous ideas that lead into great truths.

  8. Ginger- your bullet point list had me chuckling because I’ve done a lot of them.
    Thanks for the encouragement!
    Visiting from #Grace&Truth

    • Ginger Harrington

      Always great to have you here, Julie! Thanks for chiming in. I’m thinking we’ve all thought most of these things before. The struggle is real. . .

  9. Pingback: What to Do When Performance Becomes a Prison

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