If Only

If Only

How many times in life have you uttered those words – if only! If only I had a better job, if only I made better grades, if only my teacher liked me, if only, if only, if only ….

We wish and wish that things were different, better, less stressful, easier, etc. It seems that IF ONLY this one thing would go my way then life would improve, at least in whatever way we want at that moment.

Often we find, after time has passed that if our IF ONLY wish had come true, life would be more complicated, difficult and less pleasing. Hindsight, as they say, is 20/20!

There are a number of occasions in the Bible where we find the IF ONLY idea but maybe not in those exact words.

For example, when Mary and Martha were experiencing the death of their brother, Lazarus, they both said the same words to Jesus – “Lord, if only, you had been here my brother wouldn’t have died” (John 11:21; 11:32). Mary and Martha both knew and believed that Jesus was the Resurrection and the Life and that had He come when He was called that Lazarus would have been healed. Yet Jesus delayed His visit.

Mark 5:25-34 tells the story of a woman who suffered a medical condition for most of her life and was considered unclean, which meant little or no human contact. She heard that Jesus was nearby and she knew that if only she could touch His garment she would be healed. She had no idea that this would lead to a life changing encounter with Jesus.

Zacchaeus heard that Jesus was coming to his town and he so wanted to see this one he’d heard so much about (see John 19). However, he knew his stature would keep him from seeing Him so he thought, “If only, I was taller ….” and then he climbed a tree! This lead to a life changing encounter for him as well.

What are your if only thoughts today?

What are your if only thoughts today? Are they about a work challenge, a crisis at home, a friend who needs your help? Like the examples above, take them to Jesus! He has the answer and IF ONLY you’ll follow through, your life will never be the same!


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Karen McGuire

Karen McGuire came to Lead Like Jesus in February 2004 following the first Lead Like Jesus Celebration in Birmingham, Alabama, in November 2003, where she served as the volunteer coordinator. She comes with vast experience in local church ministry and denominational work and has been instrumental in the formation of several successful nonprofit ventures, including two churches, a seminary, a medical missions organization, and a welfare-to-work program. Karen served on several church staffs, held many volunteer positions in her local church, and is a Bible study teacher and seminar and retreat leader. She has one son and two young adult granddaughters.

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