Saturday, September 14, 2013


WHAT IF Eloquently said by Pastor Bob on the Northpointe Community Church blog: “Nearly everything and everyone is temporary, impermanent, and unpredictable. We drive ourselves crazy asking “What if?” What if she gets sick? What if he moves? What if the company gets sold? What if they change their minds? What if she lied? What if he dies? What if there’s a war? What if the stock market tanks again? What if I don’t ever get a good paying job again? What if? What if? What if? Against the threat of “what if,” our only power is to say and mean, “I will.” In the face of what we cannot know or control, we resolve to do what we can: we pledge to be present and to care. We give our word that, as far as it depends on us, we will be there for each other and for the life and work we have in common. “I will” is stronger than “What if?”” Ruth sent along that little Gem, knowing we were overwhelmed. I read it and thanked her. Then I heard myself quoting it at work--to an 87-year-old woman at the CNIB--and in my volunteer life—to a 30-year-old man at Walk In Counselling Services of Edmonton. Mostly, though, like so many other quotes that catch, I was telling it to myself. I am a huge fan of saying “I will”. That simple phrase, uttered as a guiding intention, has settled me to action many times. But just as there is power in saying and meaning “I will”, so also is there comfort in hearing a meant “I will.” Here are just a few of the meant “I wills” we have heard lately. I will share my home with a homeless family if no other home can be found. I will help you clean your garage. I will trim your hedge and mow your lawn. I will come to your birthday party. I will look after your dog any time you go away. I will bring your grandson and stay with you for nearly a week. I will stand here with you and let you know when the traffic light changes to “WALK”. I will share my pastries with you. I will put aside several hours to help your friend with paperwork and meet at a convenient location. I will stand on that tall ladder to screw in that light globe. I will work on optimism for good weather to make your party more fun next Saturday. I will play music with you. I will mention in my monthly report how much I appreciate having you here. I will water your plants. I will give you a ride. I will send you my favourite gluten free recipes. I will purchase fruit trays and carry tables. I will be glad to see you. Pastor Bob is right. “I will” is stronger than “What if”.

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