More Than “What If?”

12 Apr


I recently read a quote by author John Bevere on his Twitter page, “Don’t judge your future by where you’ve been! If you do, you’ll never go beyond your past!”

The question I pose, what in your past, is holding you back from fulfilling who Christ has called you to be? We’ve all heard the phrase, “What if…?” But the attitude behind this phrase is the very thing that holds us in bondage. It keeps our minds and spirits at bay by forcing us to keep reliving the past.

Let me put it this way; a friend of mine, we’ll call her Stacy, could never get past her anxiety and fears of what the future held. Her thoughts kept holding her back. I’d often hear her say, “I can’t do this or I can’t do that. If I were to do this, than something may happen.” Or the best one… “I won’t do anything, I won’t get married, and I will always be alone. I can’t move forward because of what I’ve done.”

I know that sounds manufactured. But, if we continue to play the “I can’t” or “What if?” game, we will never move forward and move beyond our past. The Apostle Paul says it best in Philippians 3:13-14; Brethren, I do not count myself to have apprehended; but one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind and reaching forward to those things which are ahead, I press toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.”

One of my favorite TV shows was Lost. If you ever watched it you’d remember the character, John Locke. In the show’s first season, we learn he was in a wheel chair as a paralytic. Something he said, over and over and over… “Don’t tell me what I can’t do.” Because of this attitude, when crash-landing on the Island, he could walk. His attitude drove him. It defined him. My question is: What is it that drives you? What motivates you to move forward, to forget what is lying behind and reaching toward the prize Jesus has in-store for you?

In his book, The Purpose Driven Life Rick Warren writes; “You were planned for God’s pleasure. The moment you were born into the world, God was there as an unseen witness, smiling at your birth. He wanted you alive… You exist for his benefit, his glory, his purpose and his delight. When you understand this truth, you will never again have a problem with feeling insignificant.”

In other words, we were planned with purpose, not to wallow in self-pity of what happened in our past, but to press forward, even if it’s little steps at a time. I’ve heard people say that it is our past that defines us. I challenge that with saying it is God who defines us and our past is what gives us our character. We can all learn from our past, move into the future and allow the past to serve as a witness of where God has taken us and where He’s taking us.

Our lives are more than… What if? Our Creator defines our lives through the power of the Word of God. A better question to be asking our self… “Who am I?” If we’re to be living victorious lives we must realize who we are in Christ and what it means to be His child. My friend, Dr. Hal Baumchen wrote, “If you believe you are hopeless, worthless, defeated, or unwanted, life would undoubtedly be characterized by defeat, despair and depression. In contrast, if you view yourself as God does: loved, chosen, wanted and valuable it would free you to feel joyful, accepted, significant and secure.”

In order for us to move from dwelling on our past and the failures in it to establishing our identity in Christ, we must overcome our negative self-perceptions we’ve allowed to control our thinking. Paul said, “Whatever a man sows, this he will also reap. For the one who sows to his own flesh shall from the flesh reap corruption, but the one who sows to the Spirit shall from the Spirit reap eternal life.Galatians 6:7-8

To change our thinking, we must think on new ideas. Dr. Neil Anderson created a list called, “Who Am I… in Christ?” This list is 100% scripture. I believe it takes new thoughts to change our belief system. If you’ve accepted the past for what it is and say you can never move forward, use this list and start changing your belief system through the Word of God. Use this list and begin moving from What if? to I Am…

I am accepted…

John 1:12- I am God’s child.

John 15:15- As a disciple, I am a friend of Jesus Christ.

Romans 5:1- I have been justified.

1 Corinthians 6:17- I am united with the Lord, and I am one with Him in spirit.

1 Corinthians 6:19-20- I have been bought with a price and I belong to God.

1 Corinthians 12:27- I am a member of Christ’s body.

Ephesians 1:3-8- I have been chosen by God and adopted as His child.

Colossians 1:13-14- I have been redeemed and forgiven of all my sins.

Colossians 2:9-10- I am complete in Christ.

Hebrews 4:14-16- I have direct access to the throne of grace through Jesus Christ.

I am secure…

Romans 8:1-2- I am free from condemnation.

Romans 8:28- I am assured that God works for my good in all circumstances.

Romans 8:31-39- I am free from any condemnation brought against me and I cannot be separated from the love of God.

2 Corinthians 1:21-22- I have been established, anointed and sealed by God.

Colossians 3:1-4- I am hidden with Christ in God.

Philippians 1:6- I am confident that God will complete the good work He started in me.

Philippians 3:20- I am a citizen of heaven.

2 Timothy 1:7- I have not been given a spirit of fear but of power, love and a sound mind.

1 John 5:18- I am born of God and the evil one cannot touch me.

I am significant…

John 15:5- I am a branch of Jesus Christ, the true vine, and a channel of His life.

John 15:16- I have been chosen and appointed to bear fruit.

1 Corinthians 3:16- I am God’s temple.

2 Corinthians 5:17-21- I am a minister of reconciliation for God.

Ephesians 2:6- I am seated with Jesus Christ in the heavenly realm.

Ephesians 2:10- I am God’s workmanship.

Ephesians 3:12- I may approach God with freedom and confidence.

Philippians 4:13- I can do all things through Christ, who strengthens me.

-J. B. Sisam


J. B. SISAM attended Bethany College of Missions and graduated with a Bachelor of Divinity degree from ACTS International Bible College. He is a certified leader and trainer through Leadership Training International. He served his ministry internship in Australia, and his ministry travels have taken him to all five continents. He carries a passion to see this generation live a passionate life for Jesus Christ to begin walking in the calling God has placed on their lives. J. B. SISAM is known for story telling that combines Biblically laced stories that bring hope and redemption. He is one of the Pastors at Life Church in Minneapolis, MN and has a passion to see this generation find their destiny in God. J. B. Sisam lives in Minneapolis with his wife Kari. Website: Blog: Facebook: Twitter: @jbsisam

photo credit: Ansel Edwards Photography via photopin cc

2 Responses to “More Than “What If?””


  1. More Than “What If?” | Official Blog of J. B. Sisam - April 12, 2013

    […] More Than “What If?”. […]

  2. A Big Milestone! | More Than A Beard - June 19, 2013

    […] “More Than What If” By J.B. Sisam […]

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