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Friday, October 3, 2014

What If ...?

No two words gather more anxiety than "what if?". What if I loose my job? What if my spouse leaves? What if a meteor falls from the sky and obliterates the planet? Nothing is as frightening as the unknown but I've lived long enough to know most things we worry about never actually happen. For a long time I've known "what if? " is a monster.  A beloved pastor friend once said, "Jesus slays the "What If Monster." As much as it is humanly possible, I believe that.
Nothing awakens a sleeping "what if?" dragon like hearing "there's a tumor in your head and we aren't sure what it is." Even with the helmet of salvation, the "what ifs" will echo in your mind upon hearing such news. I promise you won't need, as I have had, well meaning friends  to tell you their near death experiences didn't produce any evidence of a hereafter. Expect, because of your faith and attitude toward life and death, for them to assume you have thrown in the towel. Rest assured, despite my eagerness to be with Christ and because of my desire to serve Him here, I would be quite content in growing old. 
If there's a "what if?" question concerning my current  condition that I haven't asked myself and God, I haven't got a clue of what it could be. If you know me, you know I've examined this thing from every angle three or four times. I analyze things backwards and forwards, It's who I am. It's why my faith is what it is. I've tested it from every angle I've doubted it from.
Through the years I've learned this truth. The greatest fiery dart to ever hit our shields of faith will be: what if the gospel isn't true? As deep as that rabbit hole goes it still has a bottom. I could write a book on that terrible scenario in which mankind can find no hope outside itself. There's lots of reasons why being a Christ follower makes sense to me. While many of those points would deliver a death blow to the "what if?", my weapon of choice is Love. I could make a biblical case for Love being the spiritual sword. Without the gospel, Love is reduced to just an evolved protein.  However, if this faith has been conjured up by my faculties through some grand cosmic accident, producing nothing more than chemical responses to stimuli, then I will have been better for it.  I will never make an apology for having faith, hope, and love or for spreading it. I would never trade a delusion of hope in something for a reality of nothing to hope in. If my only reward shall be the relationships made while worshiping in vain, then it will have been worth it. I'd rather spend whatever time I have with those delusional enough to recognize mankind has a collective problem than those who believe they are immune to it. Or those who believe there isn't a problem. Or worse, those who think they have the solution to the problem within themselves. Call me hopelessly romantic, but I rather be with those delusional enough to believe themselves to be broken and in need of a real thing called love. Love holds a mirror in front of "what if?". Like Medusa, it is defeated by its own ugly reflection. What if the gospel isn't true? Then our reality, our reflection is a cross minus a resurrection. "What if?" once made the mistake of holding a mirror on front of a cross. Had it only reflected what mankind had made the cross into, I would have ran from "what if?". Ironic as this may seem to some, the only scenario I give up in, is one where the cross only reflects a return to the pointless nothingness so many believe we came from. But the cross doesn't reflect just our ugliness. It reflects the most beautiful of all transformations of when the universe dared to ask Jesus ," what if?" Only God could have changed that ugly image of death into one of faith, hope, and Love. He can transform the darkness with the tiniest of lights. Since He first said," let there be light"the darkness has been running scared .Imagine what that power could do for your reflection.

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