Too often, “If only” qualifies something that should have been done or said but due to this reason or that rationalization, we didn’t. Often, the press of life and its pursuits press us into a mold we never dreamed we would form for ourselves, and the hustle and bustle of life commands every nanosecond of our time to the point that we can’t “keep up.” Finally, we just want to step off the merry-go-round and let ‘er spin, and we are left feeling negligent, guilt-ridden and… “If only.” Someone once said, take a wish in one hand and spit in the other; what you will have is a wet hand.
Perhaps our industry and intention exceeds our ability; reality can be rude on the senses when we are dulled by the fantasy that we can do everything. What we would like to do is often crowded out by what we must do and maintenance displaces philanthropy in our personal rat-race. Doing what we should do is more often a matter of planning and purpose (1 Corinthians 9:7); it is not accidental, it is well planned with conviction to the task and implemented with resolve. That is what we do when something is important.
If we are to begin this process of redeeming our time (Ephesians 5:16) and redirect it to more productive, godly purposes (Matthew 6:33), we must plan to do them. Plan to attend church events, plan to be at the assembling of the saints, and plan to study your Bible; such things are not accomplished on a lark. We must take every opportunity because “to him that knoweth to do good, and doeth it not, to him it is sin” (James 4:17).
What a sad moment, to meet the Maker with only an “If only….”