There are 1,784 ifs in the Bible. If you stack all those tiny little words up, they’ll stretch as long as the Berlin Wall.
I bet before you got out of bed this morning, you used the word “if” more times than you even know. Maybe you mumbled it. Maybe you whispered it. Maybe you thought it.
“If those kids didn’t pick up after themselves last night. If I had finished day one of the Bible study yesterday, I wouldn’t have to rush to get caught up today. If I would’ve told my husband I was proud of him when he walked through the door instead of ranting about my day, I wouldn’t feel like I’m getting the ‘Worst wife in the world’ award.”
If. If. If. If.
I’m in the midst of learning just how powerful that tiny little word is. Tiny when written down, perhaps, but ginormous when put into the perspective of my life. Your life. Our lives.
Mark Batterson, lead pastor of National Community Church in Washington, D.C., and author of the new book, If: Trading Your If Only Regrets for God’s What If Possibilities, says, “Your ifs don’t just change the trajectory of your life; they change the course of history.”
Fast Forward to the End of Your Life
Seriously, go there with me for a second. What will be your “what if” at the end of this gift called life God has given us?
Will it be the things you wish you had done, but didn’t?
Batterson says, “At the end of your life, your greatest regret won’t be the things you did but wish you hadn’t. Your greatest regret will be the things you didn’t do but wish you had. It’s the what if dreams that we never act upon that turn into if only regrets.”
Sit in that for a second. Go back and read those words again.
It’s the what if dreams that we never act upon that turn into if only regrets.
You’re in control of your story. But, wait… Maybe you’re thinking, “You’ve got that wrong, Sundi Jo. God is in charge of my story. He’s the one who ordains my steps. He leads and I’m supposed to follow.”
You’re right. Kind of.
God does ordain our days. He orders our steps. But… if we’re not “students of our own history,” as Batterson writes, we’ll live with if only regrets.
We’ll get off track in the story God has written for us. Those steps He’s ordered for us – there will be days we choose to take the slide versus the steps. There will be moments we run from the hard stuff. We’ll make mistakes. We’ll have regrets.
It’s up to us to figure out what we’ll do with those regrets.
Will we turn them into If only I had done this, life wouldn’t be that way?
Or we can turn them into What if I decide to change history today, take control of my story, and start living out the purposes God has called me to?
I prefer the latter. God does too.
No matter how many regrets you have, God is the God of second chances. No matter how deep-seated those regrets are, He can turn your if only regrets into what if possibilities.
God is calling you to something great, my friend. Something big. A history-changing life. Are you letting “if” get in the way?
Let me remind you of the most powerful “if” of the 1,784 in the Bible.
If God is for us, who can ever be against us? – Romans 8:31
God is for us. He is for YOU. He is for me.
Let’s live like we know God is for us and get rid of the if only and what if regrets keeping us from defining the history God created us for.
You are one if away from changing everything, my friend.
God is for you!
Question: What is an ‘if only’ regret you can turn into a second chance today? You can leave a comment by clicking here.