Do you have an “if” list? I do. It’s that list of conditions in my head that prevents me from serving God right now, right where I am.
With the resources I already have.
I hear the debate going on in my head. If I had more money, I could give more. If my kids would just be responsible, then I’d have more time to devote to God. If my husband would get that job then we could…
The list goes on and on. Other’s lists would be different than mine. Their lists might contain things like, if I could only find the right husband, if I could live in that city, if I could live in that house or neighborhood, if only my health would improve, if…if…if…
When we fill our “if” list we build up road blocks that prevent us from being effective for God. We find ourselves just waiting for the perfect conditions and THEN we can do what God is calling us to do. What we are really doing is stalling and finding excuses that keep us in our safe, predictable lives. Until all the conditions we have listed are met, we feel justified in waiting. After all, doesn’t the scripture say “wait on the Lord?”
But of course, waiting on the Lord and procrastination are not the same thing. One is a directive from the Lord not to run ahead of him. The other is our own inclination to drag our feet. We need to land somewhere in the middle. Willing to pause and let God lead but not to sit down and do nothing until we decide the conditions are right. Frankly, if you are walking close to the Lord, He will have you doing things you never thought you would do and in the most unlikely circumstances.
So perhaps it’s time we looked honestly and closely at our own lists. Are there ideals that we need to dispel? Things we need to let go of?
What’s on your “if” list? Are you willing to tear up that list of distractions and move forward with the Lord? There’s no time like the present.
Psalm 119:60 I hasten and do not delay to keep your commandment.(ESV)
Proverbs 3:28 Do not say to your neighbor, “Go, and come again, tomorrow I will give it”—when you have it with you. (ESV)