News & Events
- July 10, 2017
- Posted by: Kara Bratton
- Category: Devotions
Two little words that can lead to endless possibilities when placed at the beginning of a sentence. How many times have you said them to yourself and to others?
- If only I had shared my ideas for the new project at work
- If only I had asked her out on that date or If only I had said yes to go out with him
- If only I hadn’t eaten that burrito before bed
- If only I had invested in that company when it was starting
- If only I had listened when you warned me about that
Our lives are filled with decisions – thousands of them made every day. Some are insignificant while others can become life altering. In every decision we make we try to choose things that will be for our benefit; things that will make us happier and improve our lives. But knowing which choice to make can often prove difficult. For some, decisions are quick and impulsive. For others, decisions are made only after a laborious process of fact-finding that addresses every possible outcome. Either way the outcome is never guaranteed. This of course leads to the greatest “if only” of them all.
- If only I could see what was going to happen
Wouldn’t it be great to know how things will work out tomorrow so that we could make better choices today? At first glance this seems like a no brainer; every decision made would be the right one, leading to the best possible outcome. Of course, life doesn’t work that way and for a good reason. Consider giving a dinner choice to a young child. Will kids concern themselves with caloric intakes, fat content or value for the price. They’re going to pick their meal based other critically important factors:
- Where did we go last time
- Where do we always go
- Are there dinosaurs or zebras in the restaurant
- What is my favorite food
- Who has the coolest toy in their kids meal
Even though we think we know what’s best for us, we usually don’t. This is why from the time of Adam God has chosen to remain active in our world. God doesn’t come down and have direct conversations with us in the same way He did in the Garden of Eden. Instead, He has given us His word through the scriptures to guide us into making decisions that align with His will. The Bible assures us in the words of Jeremiah 29:11 that God has a plan for our lives, one which will be for our benefit and provide us with hope and a future. But it doesn’t end there. Knowing that our sinfulness prevents us from obeying His commands, God sent His Son to be the sacrifice for our sin and to give us our only chance to receive forgiveness, salvation and eternal life. In this great demonstration of love, God has turned our focus away from knowing the “if only’s” into the sure knowledge of an “only if,” as explained in Christ’s words in John 14:6: “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.”
Live with the confidence that in all things God’s unending love for you will see you through good decisions, bad decisions, and everything in between. Cast aside the desires of an “if only” life for the certain peace that only comes from a life in Christ Jesus.
Devotion by Richard Schumacher
LSEM Director of Programs & Services