What if...

What if ...

By Cheryl McCloud 

I love listening to small children ask questions. It's fascinating to hear how their minds work (or to try to figure out where they're coming from!).

What if it's dark ... would there be a rainbow? What if ants were as big as dogs? What if we didn't have eyebrows? What if babies could talk?

Have you ever noticed that sometimes, though, those little words seem to hold us back?

What if nobody likes me? What if nobody listens? What if I mess it up?

If we think we're alone in thinking like this, think again. All the way back to Genesis, we find examples of people who have struggled with those what ifs.

Abraham's servant tried to cover his bases by asking, "What if the woman is unwilling to come back with me to this land?" (Gen. 24:5)

Joseph's brothers in Gen. 50:15 worried when they asked each other, "What if Joseph holds a grudge against us and pays us back for all the wrongs we did to him?"

And who can forget Moses arguing with the Lord in Exodus 4:1, "What if they do not believe me or listen to me and say, 'The Lord did not appear to you'?"

Have you noticed that we have a tendency to take the "what ifs" in our lives to the negative? Why do we gravitate toward the worse-case scenarios? Some may argue that it's good to be prepared. Nobody likes to fail, but we seem to forget that we're always learning and learning is messy and riddled with mistakes.

But if that's where our focus remains, than what are we missing?

Next time you encounter a "what if" in your life, try turning it around to the positive.

"What if" I offer to pray for the cashier who looks like she's about to break under the weight on her shoulders?  "What if" this new job opportunity offers exciting possibilities? "What if" instead of worrying about tomorrow, I stand on God's word that He knows what I need and WILL provide?