“If only my situation were different.”
“If only I had more time/money/friends.”
Some of the most destructive words in your vocabulary are “if only.” It flushes everything you have in order to make room for to wish for what you haven’t. Horatio Spafford lived through the devastation of the Chicago fire. As a prominent businessman, he was poised to bounce back from the catastrophe. In the meantime, he and his family would enjoy a vacation in England. There they would be refreshed and assist his friend, D. L. Moody in the evangelistic services. The day the ship sailed for England, Horatio was unavoidably detained due to business matters. He kissed his wife and three daughters telling them he would follow them shortly. He never saw his daughters again. There was a collision at sea and the ship sank rapidly. His wife was saved with only a few other passengers.
Spafford could have said many “if only” statements. “If only I had been there. If only I had not sent them alone. If only we hadn’t lost so much in the fire.” As you can see, “if only” does not stop naturally. Before you know it, you may as well say, “If only I were God!”
You can’t be God, but you can rest in Him. Someone has said, “Peace is not the absence of difficulty, but the presence of God.”
Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, Whose mind is stayed on thee: Because he trusteth in thee. Trust ye in the Lord for ever: For in the Lord JEHOVAH is everlasting strength: (Isaiah 26:3-4)
Spafford’s personal reflection as he did later sail over the place his daughter sank to their watery grave is engraved in the chorus of words he wrote. “It is well with my soul.” God is in control of the details. He is even in charge of the immaterial souls of men. Trust in the Lord forever.
December 14, 2018
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