Saturday, January 23, 2010

Goodbye to the What-ifs

A good friend once told me that if I believe in a sovereign God than I should never have regret; "should" being the operative word. Well, like all things about God, it seems, I have a much easier time understanding that as a concept than practically living it out. For me, though, regret plays out in the form of it's sister question "What if...?"

Since we moved to Durham, I have made a lot of good decisions. I've had more sleep, more time with God and with my family, I've learned how to paint, taken up running again and I've got a social life. However, I did make one specific poor decision since moving here. I held onto the assumption that I would get pregnant once the stress of leaving my job and moving abated and, consequently, did not pursue some things I could have. "What if I get pregnant?" was the question always in my mind and so I didn't sign up for volleyball last fall when I KNEW it would be an incredible outlet for me. I got money for my birthday for new clothes and chose not to buy any because "What if I need new maternity clothes soon?" What if? It's a powerful question and one that I'm learning looks too far to the future, rests on too many assumptions and does nothing but hold me back from what I actually should do in "This Day." Jesus said that we shouldn't worry about tomorrow...I've come to see that asking "what if" is a fancy form of worry and have realized clearly that asking it over and over is yet another trust issue I have with God. Seeing so clearly my tendency to postpone things that are good for me in the now over possibilities that I might deem to be better in the future was a big discovery. And, with big discoveries about myself, I saw the need for change.

So what to do about this? Well, I'm trying to replace the "what if" question with "what now?" Last week, I answered that question by signing up for a competetive volleyball league. After my first game on Wednesday, I already know it was a fantastic decision. I had the time of my life for two hours and didn't think once about my desire for that elusive baby. I'm seeing that choosing to ask "What now" is slowly replacing worry with trust and longing with joy. That's a big change for me.

I don't know how I'll answer this new question tomorrow, but I do know this: I'm saying good-bye to the "what-ifs" in my life. Volleyball is a whole lot more fun.

1 comment:

  1. I have felt the same way, Carolyn! The past few months, I've been living my life in the "what if" mode, mostly as far as pregnancy goes. I'm so glad you signed up for volleyball and are enjoying it so much! I have been enjoying training for the 10k too - that was one of those things I have always wanted to do but was hesitant to commit to in case we got pregnant. I'm trying to live one day at a time and not worry about the "what ifs," just like you! Thanks for continuing to share!