One of them would say something like “What if (insert name of sibling) wasn’t strong?” to which another one would reply, “What if nobody liked (insert name of sibling)?”
After listening for a few minutes to this unwholesome talk, it was put to a stop. But the way it originally got started was not like this. It was simply from the constant barrage of “What if” questions – mostly related to sports – from my youngest that got the rest of us referring to it as his “What if” game.
“What if KD left the Thunder?”
“What if SMU never got the death penalty?”
“What if I get drafted into the MLB?”
That kid loves a story and has quite an imagination so in asking the questions he really just wants someone to dream of future realities with him. Today I want to ask you to play the “What if” game with me.
Just for a moment or maybe throughout your day, let yourself think on this:
“What if we all lived out our calling to love others as we love ourselves?”
I don’t even think we can comphrehend how this alone would change things in our marriages, families, relationships with friends, neighbors and strangers, our workplaces, schools, homes, communities, churches and world!
So let’s just play it out with a few scenarios.
What if instead of nitpicking our husbands about all the way he fails, we looked for ways to serve, encourage and respect? What if these simple gestures of grace made home – and us – a safe place instead of a place he wants to avoid because of the constant reminder of how he doesn’t measure up to our expectations of him as husband and dad? What if not feeeling so beaten down anymore led him to initiate more family time and to show more thoughtful care and love toward you?
- Do you think there would be less divorce?
- Happier marriages?
- More secure kids?
What if more secure kids meant instead of them constantly comparing themselves and worrying about what others think, they were satisfied with who they are? What if knowing and resting in their identity in Him instead of striving to be somebody else enabled them to take their eyes off themselves to see others in need of a friend. What if by befriending the one on the outside or noticing who was being excluded that person began to feel loved and significant?
- Do you think that woulds start a chain reaction?
- Do you think there would be more genuine friendships?
- Less cattiness?
- Less tearing others down to build oneself up?
What if we adults followed suit by making time for coffee with a friend going through a hard time or calling up someone we haven’t talked to in awhile instead of busying ourselves with own agendas? What if we weren’t so wrapped up in our own lives that we even knew a friend or neighbor was experiencing difficulty?
What if church members actually lived out the gospel they profess to believe by sharing their brokenness with one another instead of pretending things are perfect? What if by taking off the masks and letting others see our weaknesses and sin, it freed others to do the same?
- Do you think there would be more forgiveness and grace?
- Do you think that would build better, more transparent relationships?
- Do you think this might even make us more content, joyful, thankful?
What if this wasn’t all just dreaming and by God’s grace we really lived…
“Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; it does not rejoice at wrongdoing, but rejoices with the truth. Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. Love never ends.”
1 Corinthians 13:4-8
How awesome to see how loving others better would actually impact and change our own corners of the world.
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