No matter what happens in life, we are always tempted to visit the "What if's." What if he had made different choices, what if we had made different choices, what if he had been somewhere else, etc, etc. You know what I mean. We all do it. Sometimes we can spend hours, days, even years going over and over the "what if's" in our minds.
It's all unproductive because we can never go back and change anything in the past. We only become frustrated, depressed, angry and a multitude of other emotions. And sometimes we even ruin our future by replaying the past.
So we determined in our hearts that we would not "what if" the circumstances surrounding our son's disappearance. That was a choice we made; not unlike any other choice. The Bible talks about it in II Corinthians 10:5.
"...bringing every thought into captivity to the obedience of Christ." (New King James version)Taking every thought captive and giving it to Christ is probably one of the most helpful disciplines in the life of a Christian. We have certainly found it to be so. It closes the door to the enemy of our souls and doesn't give him any room to bring in confusion, doubt, self-pity, and a multitude of other negative emotions.
We had gone to Hawaii to help search for our missing son, 22 years old and a recent college graduate. He had gone on a 4 day hike across the Kohala and had not returned for work on Monday. He had gone alone - not a good idea but he had no one to go with him.
We joined with the many other searchers to try to find John or to find some clue that would give us an idea of what might have happened to him. But we found nothing. When we began to come to the realization that we would not see him again on this earth, my husband felt the Father urging him to go up to the mountain and worship Him. So we took a borrowed guitar (not that worship necessarily means music; although that often helps) and went up to the backside of the Kohala just over the mountain from where John had been hiking. We croaked out some songs because we both had laryngitis. But worship is always a matter of the heart, and we were worshiping the God we loveand have served all our lives, not because we were expecting anything but because we wanted Him to know beyond any shadow of a doubt that we trusted Him with our son as well as with our own lives.
After a little while we drove around to the Pololu trailhead. As we drove up we could see a complete double rainbow extending from the valley to the sea. The rainbow is a beautiful expression of God's promises and of His faithfulness. We worshiped some more, the praises and songs flowing from our hearts as the tears flowed from our eyes.
When we finished, not that one is ever finished worshiping the Lord, we stopped by the home of the couple we had met on our first day of searching for John. They lived almost at the trailhead. We chatted a little and the wife asked if she could "sing over us." We had never had anyone sing over us and we weren't sure what that meant but we agreed. She then knelt down in front of us on her little patio and began to sing Darlene Zschech's song, "Shout to the Lord." She wove the movements of hula into her song in one of the most beautiful expressions of worship we have ever experienced. The tears flowed freely. It was one of the most precious moments of our lives.
Worship is a profound expression of trust and faith in a God who is sovereign and who is able to do what the apostle Paul wrote about in Romans 8:28.
"And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose." (New King James Version)He is able to take any circumstance of life and transform it into something that is good and glorifying to Himself. That is why we discipline ourselves not to visit the "What if's." We choose instead, to worship the only One who is worthy of our worship, honor and praise.