This morning I listened to an extract of a comedy show set in a school environment. The sketch is an exchange between a school teacher and her students that made me chuckle repeatedly. The children were all very young, under the age of 11, but the final words of the young boy made the teacher angry but it soon made her think.

Below is a transcript of the exchange between the teacher and the class.

Teacher to her class: “who can give us an example of a big animal”? Swiftly hands went up, the teacher then pointed to the first child who shouted out, “elephant”; and then another child shouted out, “donkey”. A third child shouted out “Goliath”. The rest of the class laughed. “Goliath is not an animal”, said the teacher. Another boy shouted “fish”. “Which fish”? Asked the teacher. “The big fish that swallowed Uncle Jonah”, said the boy.

“Who taught you that”? Asked the teacher. “My uncle told me that the big fish swallowed Uncle Jonah” replied the boy.

“Anyway, what does your uncle know”? Asked the teacher. “The answer is in the Bible replied the boy”. “Shut up! Listen, I studied zoology, there’s no way a whale can swallow a human being because it has a small throat”.

“Anyway, you are my teacher you know better but when I go to heaven, I will ask Uncle Jonah,” said the boy. “But what if your Uncle Jonah is not in heaven”? Asked the teacher. “Then when you go hell you ask him”, replied the boy.

There are so many what if scenarios in this life some are small but potentially important like what if I had applied for that particular job. Or what if I had taken more interest in my studies at school, life could have turned out so much better.

Then we have the very big and important what ifs? Such as what if I had not taken that substance into by body when my instinct and conscience was telling me not to.  Or what if I had only said sorry it could have saved my marriage and with it the pain of separation, divorce and the breakup of my family. Then the big what ifs? Such as, what if there is indeed a heaven and a hell? Or what if Jesus is the Way the Truth and the Life”?

Nearly all what ifs? Are asked with the benefit of hindsight. In most cases one cannot know the answer to what if; however, we can look at others and make a reasonable assumption on how things might have turned out.

In the scenarios I give above concerning applying for that particular job or taking more interest in study one has their class mates as well as siblings to use as a gauge. I went to school with a boy who took great interest in science and studied very hard. He left school went on to study astrophysics at university and years later he went on to work for NASA.

In the case of not taking that substance one cannot become addicted if one never starts. There are many people whose life took a very bad turn after one occasion: the substance was contaminated or their body had an unusual reaction to it. Or they kept using it saying to themselves they are in control until they became addicted.

Saying sorry at the right time is no guarantee that the outcome might have saved the marriage and the breakup of the family but it may have. In the words of the biblical proverb, “a word in season how good”. 

There is one what if statement that is in my own experience and opinion does not need the benefit of hindsight, id est, Jesus being: “the Way the Truth and the Life”.

The benefit is instant, continuous and everlasting. Try Jesus and try Him today, you will not regret it.

Apostle Paul was very unwilling to try Jesus for he had convinced himself that Jesus was not the Christ so he held on to what he had and therefore who he was, a sinner.

Days after supervising the stoning to death of an innocent man he was on the Damascus Road when he had a supernatural experience which changed his life irrevocably. Later he wrote that the biggest regret he had was not accepting the message of Jesus Christ earlier.

I will continue on this theme over the next few blogs because there are many what if moments which we must not allow to pass us by.

Our platform is the world and our congregation the people.

The Lord’s servant

Lloyd Denny