Welcome I have read that the two most dangerous phrases in our vocabulary are “what if” and “if only,” like our happiness and joy are dependent on life’s circumstances. I have certainly fallen victim to this unhealthy mindset more than once in my life. But a recent discussion at church left me rethinking the phrase, “What if?”
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Food For Thought I know I’ve been bogged down with worry in the past, anchoring my thoughts to “What if?” as potential disaster consumed my thoughts. What if my husband or I fall ill? What if I die before my daughter is fully grown? What if we don’t have enough money to pay the bills? What if the next natural disaster or national crisis lands in our backyard? What if I everything I’ve ever known or been taught has been false? Life is full of what if’s and we can let them lead our mind and heart down a path of negativity, worry, and anxiety.
But it was recently brought to my attention that “What if…” can have the exact opposite effect on our thinking and our lives. Instead of “What if it all goes wrong,” we start thinking, “What if it all goes right?”
With the change of a single word, we have a different outlook and everything, everything changes! It was a novel concept for me to focus on the idea that it could all go right. But why is this idea so new for me? Haven’t I been praying? Haven’t I voiced my belief? Haven’t I declared my faith to be steadfast and my hope sure? If these statements are true, then the words “what if” mean something entirely different for me.
What if the proposal goes through and I’m accepted? What if the doctor shares good news? What if the lumps or spots are gone? What if the needed funds come today? What if I am invited? What if that surprise is meant for me? What if I step out of my comfort zone only to be rewarded for my ideas and experience? What if I’m actually happy where I am right now? What if it all goes amazingly well? What if God heard the prayers and the blessing is on its way?
I once read the following quote: “Begin to live as though your prayers have already been answered.” That IS faith and that is the power of “what if” in a positive light. Think about it, what if God has already answered this prayer. I don’t know about you, but that gives me a completely different perspective on my hopes and dreams and my life. How much easier is it to live a life of peace, contentment, and joy when we have the mindset of “What if God already took care of this?” This simple shift in thinking has made a huge impact on my levels of anxiety and worry, as in there’s WAY LESS!
I want to challenge you to have the most peaceful and content final weeks of 2018 simply by thinking “What if?” And not just any “what if” thoughts, but the powerful “What if God’s got this?” and the realization of, “Wait, I KNOW God’s got this!”
Today’s Scripture We can find comfort and reassurance from God’s Word in so many places, but I think one of the most widely sought passages for this purpose is the Twenty-third Psalm. (The following verses are from Psalm 23 in the ESV Holy Bible from Crossway Publishers.)
What if I need something? “The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want.” (v. 1)
What if I’m feeling restless? “He makes me lie down in green pastures. He leads me beside still waters.” (v. 2)
What if I don’t know what to do? “He restores my soul. He leads me in paths of righteousness for his name’s sake.” (v. 3)
What if I go through a tough and scary event in my life? “Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me.” (v. 4)
What if people try to do me harm? “You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies; you anoint my head with oil; my cup overflows.” (v. 5)
What if I’m alone? “Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life, and I shall dwell in the house of the Lord forever.” (v. 6)
Today’s Bible Journaling Pages
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