What if…

Single, clueless and didn't care.  Hawaii 1969

Single, clueless and didn’t care. Hawaii 1969

“What if?”  There are a lot of what ifs in our lives, aren’t there?  You bet there is. “What if I would have gotten that degree,” or “What if I would have said no,” or “What if I left the house for work 10 seconds earlier.”  We look back and second guess and wonder if we’ve done the right thing.  We experience consequences for decisions made and dread we didn’t ask someone for some advice or simply gone a bit slower, or maybe faster.  But there’s no going back.  There’s no second chances.  The accident you were in won’t be avoided no matter how many times you wonder “What if I would have left 10 seconds earlier?”

Newly married and safely in God's hands.

Newly married and safely in God’s hands.

I love this verse from Proverbs:  A man’s heart plans his way, but the Lord directs his steps (16:9).  Part of the beauty of that verse is that as a Christian man, or woman, our hearts are given to God and He changes them.  Even so, we often make plans and find ourselves somewhere we never dreamed of being.  The reason for that is God is faithful and desires only the best, from His perspective, for our lives.  When Jackie and I were married, we never planned on giving our most financially prosperous time to live to do volunteer work with very little earnings, but that’s exactly what we did.  Consequently, we’ve arrived at our “golden years” with very little in retirement–not even a year’s worth of savings.  We had planned on working, being involved in Christian ministry and having some loot put away for retirement.  What we did have, which wasn’t a gigantic stash, lost 70% of its value during a stock hiatus.  So here we are today in those delightful “Best years of our lives” with no nest egg to sit on.  Are we bummed about this?  Not even a little.  We’ve had incredible lives thus far and been on so many adventures and seen so many people’s lives changed for the better that all the money on earth couldn’t buy what we have stashed in our memories.  We are happy, delighted, blessed, by God’s faithfulness and great care for us.

42 years married and not looking back

42 years married and not looking back

Psalm 37:25 says this:  I have been young, and now am old; Yet I have not seen the righteous forsaken, and Psalm 34:10 tells me this, The young lions lack and suffer hunger; But those who seek theLord shall not lack any good thing.  Our hope is in God.  Money runs out, stocks go busted, retirement plans get messed up when the pension you thought was coming was suddenly ponzied away.  But that which is eternal lasts throughout eternity and those born of an eternal God go on with Him.  We make plans, God directs our steps.  Thank God for the “paths of righteousness” we have to walk upon.  For you who may still be thinking about
“What if,” I would encourage you to go to the only One who has the answer, the Lord Jesus Christ, give your heart to Him and look ahead.  If God needs to walk you into your past, He can do that just as easily as He can direct your steps into the future.  wave

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5 thoughts on “What if…

  1. Bob! I really appreciate that God led me to be part of the 1994-95 Fall DTS at the YWAM Base in MT in the time that he did, because there I met you and was discipled for a time by you – you spoke things into me that have stayed with me and I always appreciate your words of encouragement through your various postings and whatnot. Thank you! Blessings, -Brian

  2. Hey Brian…thanks for your encouragement. It has been a great blessing to me after finding you on FB and hearing and seeing all the changes that happened in your life since that DTS. Wow, that old saying, “Be patient, God isn’t through with me yet,” was and is so true of your life. It’s not an easy task to stand your ground in Christ these days and I’m so happy when I come across folks like you that continue to stand and not give up.

  3. BOB,
    Excellent article. So many what ifs. Most due to poor judgement or ignorance. My Guardian Angel has worked overtime & I look forward to meeting, hopefully not in the near future. Your pic in Hawaii is of a happy young man. This journey helped in your development for what you have become today. God has placed all of us exactly where we are today. Perhaps with knowledge gained, I would as a younger man have made different choices and be in a different place. Now older, wiser & less physically fit I will use experience & knowledge to navigate body & soul. Admitting….very happy in my place today thanks to God’s Blessings including Grandparents who planted first seed for Christianity.

  4. How’z your memory. Me in Florida. You in CA. You went to Ed’s home Bible study because you got cookies. But you told me about it and I came to Christ at that Bible study a couple of years later when you were in FL and me in CA. Like a master weaver, God does put together some pretty cool stuff.

  5. Do remember the cookies…..a perk at the meeting. But wasn’t the reason for attending Ed’s study. Don’t remember you were in FL at the time….but do remember telling you about the cookies. Hopefully God uses me in ways I haven’t realized.

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