Sometimes, our hearts skip a beat
and we ask the worrying questions of “what if …”
after a situation/relationship/election/crisis/etc
is over.

What if …
… ‘xyz’ hadn’t been done or said
… the stock market hadn’t plummeted
… the relationship hadn’t gone sour
… an election hadn’t turned out the way it did
… the accident hadn’t happened
… a loved one hadn’t become so ill or died
… Mother Nature hadn’t unleashed such fury

Why do we continue to ask
the “what if” questions that cause
… our personal heart to beat irregularly
… distress and anxiety
… our corporate heart to pound

Why do we continue to ask
the “what if” questions
that bring about
… less compassion
… less focus on issues of justice
… more fear
… more depression

May those “what if” questions of the past
have no more power to distract us
or cause us concern.

Instead may we focus on the
“what if” questions of the future
… what if I journey down path A instead of path B
… what if I say yes to an invitation extended my way
… what if I take the risk and explore a new line of work, vocation, interest
… what if I join a group, take a course
… what if I make time to ‘be still’ and consider the gifts around and within me
… what if I pick up the phone and call someone who is hurting
… what if I reach out in love to myself as well as to God and my neighbour
… what if I …

While “what if” questions can bring
… regret, grief, self-blame, guilt.

The “what if” questions can bring
… challenge, encouragement, nourishment.

What has passed
… has passed.
What has passed
… cannot be undone.

What lies ahead
… has yet to unfold.
What lies ahead
… ‘can’ be done.

What if the haunting “what if’s” of the past
become our teacher
… instead of a soul-ache deep within us
and we are led to discover
the hope, the challenge, the joy
of soul-enriching possibilities.




Photo & Text © June Maffin

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