One Little "If" Can Change Everything
"If God is for us, who can be against us?" Romans 8:31b (NIV)
It was a picture perfect day in Paris. After climbing 669 steps to the second floor, we hitched a terrifying elevator ride to the top of the Eiffel Tower. Then, with France as my witness, I kissed my wife. Life goal #102? Check! And it all started with if.
You could simply say that I puckered my lips, took an approach path from the left, closed my eyes at the last second, and voila — a kiss in France, not to be confused with a French kiss. That’s how it happened, but there’s more to it than that.
That simple kiss was the result of a rather complex itinerary. We flew out of Dulles International Airport, made it through French customs, took the regional train to Paris, hailed a taxi whose driver enjoyed saying mademoiselle a little too much for my taste and got walking directions from a French lady with a dog in her purse. Not even kidding! Classic as a croissant! But that, too, is just a fraction of the story.
You could argue that our Eiffel Tower kiss originated the moment I set life goal #102. And that’s partially true. You won’t accomplish 100 percent of the goals you don’t set.
But the true origin of our kiss traces all the way back to the 1889 World’s Fair in Paris. An engineer named Alexandre Gustave Eiffel proposed a 984-foot tower, the tallest building in the world at that time. Skeptics scoffed at his design, calling it useless and artless. Eiffel called her La Dame de Fer — the Iron Lady.
It was Eiffel’s if that made our romantic rendezvous atop the tower possible, but Eiffel himself thanked 72 scientists, engineers and mathematicians on whose shoulders he stood. Their names are inscribed on the tower, and without their collective genius, our kiss is cancelled.
Then there were the 300 riveters, hammermen and carpenters who put together the 18,038-piece jigsaw puzzle of wrought iron. Oh, and don’t forget the acrobatic team Eiffel hired to help his workers maintain balance on very thin beams during strong gusts of wind.
Now, I know it’s starting to sound like all of history revolves around and conspired for our kiss, so let me stop there and make my point. Every moment, like our kiss atop the Eiffel Tower, is created by millions of ifs that combine in a million different ways to make that moment possible. And if you need to read that sentence again, no shame. It’s complicated — as complicated as the sovereignty of God. Yet as simple as if.
History is like an intricately interwoven tapestry with infinite patterns that only the Omniscient One can see and foresee — but if threads the needle. Your ifs don’t just change the trajectory of your life; they change the course of history.
Our kiss atop the Eiffel Tower is part of a chain reaction that started when I wondered if Lora would go out with me. Then I acted on that if — well, actually I dialed and hung up a few times first. (We could get away with that before caller ID.)
Long story short, one if led to another if, which led to I do. The net result? Twenty-three years of marriage and three ifs named Parker, Summer and Josiah.
If you stop and think about it, everything begins with if. Every achievement, from the Nobel Prize to the Oscars, begins with what if? So does every dream, every breakthrough. So the question is: What’s your what if? If you aren’t sure, go back to the Bible!
There are 1,784 ifs in the Bible. Most of those ifs function as conditional conjunctions on the front end of God’s promises. If we meet the condition, God delivers on the promise! All that stands between your current circumstances and your wildest dreams is one little if.
One little if can change everything.
One little if can change anything.
And perhaps the most amazing if is Romans 8:3, today’s key verse — "If God is for us, who can be against us?"
God is for you every day.
God is for you in every way.
Lord, forgive us for believing the lie of the enemy that You are somehow against us. Nothing could be further from the truth! Thank You that You are for us every day in every way! Thank You that you proved it at Calvary’s cross! In Jesus’ Name, Amen.
TRUTH FOR TODAY:
Romans 8:28, "And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose." (NIV)
Romans 8:37, "No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us." (NIV)
REFLECT AND RESPOND:
If God is for you, why are you worried?
Your problems might be bigger than you, but they aren’t bigger than God.