If Only…But!

by Seneca Moraleda-Puguan

Currencies around the world are depreciating, causing economies to shake. Natural calamities are becoming more frequent and worse. Deadly viruses are wreaking havoc. Crimes are rising by the day. Wars are just waiting to begin. Bad news, one after another, bombard our waking days.

Things are becoming more unbearable each day, aren’t they? The times are crazy and the earth has become a more challenging place to live in.

Sometimes, there are only two words my heart wishes to convey but my mouth cannot utter.

If only…If only life was easier.

If only I can protect my children from the pains and aches that this world brings.
If only we can control the seasons.
If only we can turn back time.
If only we can prevent cruel and heartbreaking circumstances from happening.
If only good exists and evil does not.
If only death was escapable.

If only.

These things can happen in Hollywood and Korean dramas. But in real life, they simply can’t. We live in a broken, imperfect world. We live in an era where division, wickedness, injustice abound.

But… yes, but! Oh, ‘But’ is such a beautiful word.

According to the Oxford dictionary, ‘but’ is used to introduce a phrase or a clause contrasting with what has already been mentioned. It is used to indicate the possibility of anything other than what is being stated.

We may not have any control on circumstances coming our way and the events happening around the world BUT Someone is! And He left us with countless promises and encouragements we can hold on to. Let me give you a rundown of such wonderful truths we can cling on to.

John 16:33: “In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.”

In Matthew 19:26, it says, Jesus looked at them and said: “With man this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.”

Psalm 30:5: “For his anger lasts only a moment, but His favor lasts a lifetime; weeping may come for the night, but joy comes in the morning.”

Matthew 24:13: But to the one who stands firm to the end will be saved.”

Proverbs 10:12: “Hatred stirs up conflict, but love covers all wrongs.”

Matthew 24:35: “Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will never pass away.”

Psalm 3:3: But you, Lord, are a shield about me, my glory, and the lifter of my head.”

I can go on and on talking about the many promises of God but this page won’t suffice. In fact, ‘Fear not!’ or ‘Do not be afraid’ has been commanded in the Bible 365 times, one for each day of the year.

Yes, we may have a lot of ‘If Onlys’, but it’s much fitting to dwell on the ‘Buts’.

Life may be difficult, and waves may be battering our souls BUT we are not to lose hope and be discouraged. We may sometimes feel alone and unnoticed BUT we are never forsaken and abandoned.

We may feel unloved BUT know that we are loved and cared for. There are times we feel helpless and defeated BUT we can lift our heads because we are helped and rescued.

Allow me to bring encouragement to your troubled soul with this song from Victory Worship.“When life is overwhelming and fear is all I feel, Your word that lives inside me reminds me You are here. My hope You restore, Your promise is sure, and I am convinced that You are faithful. All things are possible in Your name.”

May our ‘what ifs’ and ‘if onlys’ be replaced with thoughts of faith and hope from this day forward, knowing that the things around us may seem too impossible to bear BUT all things are possible in His Name. Take heart!

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