Reposted from Oldpaths Journal
“If it had not been the LORD who was on our side, now may Israel say;”
Life is filled with if’s and then’s. When you look at all the if’s that could have happened in your life, imagine where you would be if they had happened? This is truly a sobering thought when you look back at your life. There are so many if’s, and I’m not talking about regrets, that had they happened your life would be completely different; and for most of us life would be a complete wreck.
In Psalm 124, David acknowledged the if’s and then’s of Israel’s history. If the LORD had not been there for them when the enemy rose up against them, he acknowledged that they would have been swallowed up and killed. If the LORD was not on their side, he acknowledged that the waters would have gone over them when they passed through the Red Sea and the Jordan River. David knew that if the LORD had not been on their side, then they would not have experienced their blessings.
You need to realize that if the LORD had not been on your side throughout your life, then you would not be where you are today. Look back at your life and see where the LORD stepped in and saved you from the attacks of enemies and from making foolish decisions in your life. There are three things you must learn from the if’s and then’s of life.
First, life has consequences. To every if there is a then. If you do right, then there are blessings. If you do wrong, then there is heartache. You must never forget that you cannot have an if without a then. Every action in life has its consequences. You can choose the action, but you cannot choose the consequence. Before you make any decisions in life, I encourage you to remember that there are consequences with which you will have to live.
Second, blessings have prerequisites. Throughout the Scriptures God shows us the blessings He wants to give, but they always come with an if. If you do what God tells you to do, then you will receive the blessing of doing right. For instance, “Seek ye first” is the if of Matthew 6:33, and “all these things shall be added unto you” is the then of this verse. You will never receive the then without first doing the if. God is not an entitlement God. Yes, He wants to bless you, but only after you perform the if.
God is in control. The greatest thing about looking at the if’s and then’s of the Scriptures is that you learn God is truly in control of everything. When you look back at your life and see all the if’s and then’s that could have happened, you quickly realize that God is in control of your life. Many times God silently guides you away from the bad if’s so that you won’t have to experience the tragic then’s. On the other hand, many times God guides you into the good if’s so that you can experience the blessed then’s.
Friend, it all comes down to one thing, whether or not you will follow the guiding hand of God. If you will daily yield to the guiding hand of God in your life, you will find that He will control the if’s and then’s. Are you yielding to God or are you fighting Him? Don’t ignore the voice of the Holy Spirit in your life. Realize He is guiding you away from tragedy so that you can experience His blessings.
Furthermore, you would be wise to stop and look back at all the if’s and then’s that God has helped you through. Right now, take the time to thank Him for protecting you from the tragic if’s of life. Thank Him for leading you into the blessed if’s. When you look back and see all the good God has done, you will say like David, “Our help is in the name of the LORD…” (Psalm 124:8)
Allen Domelle is the editor of the Old Paths Journal which is more than just a Christian’s publication. It is an excellent place to learn how today’s headlines will forge tomorrow’s laws and statutes. Keep yourself in tune with what is happening around the world, as well as in your own backyard with our daily updates and devotionals.