What If vs. What Now


"Peter asked Jesus, “What about him, Lord?” Jesus replied, “If I want him to remain alive until I return, what is that to you? As for you, follow me.”  - John 21: 21-22


How often do you find yourself asking, “What if” about the next practice or game?  If you’re not sure, I’ll throw out some examples I’ve experienced.  As an athlete, What If’s like, “What if we lose tomorrow?”  “What if I fall during warm-ups?” “What if my teammate won’t like me after I tell her how I really feel about a certain topic?”  “What if I miss this free throw?” As a coach, here are some: “What if that player starts acting out and I won’t know how to handle it?” “What if that press break doesn’t work?  What will those parents think of me?” “What if we don’t meet people’s expectations this year?”  “What if I fail?” 

I challenge you to take a whole day and be aware of all of the times your mind hangs out in the “What If” state, some of us will more than others.  For me, I am a possibilities person.  I love thinking about what could happen in a positive way, but unfortunately I also worry about the possible negative “What If” outcomes. 

After Jesus had resurrected and He was having his last conversation with Peter, Jesus multiple times told Peter what he was to do now, in light of what he just witnessed, “Feed My sheep.” Peter’s immediate response was a question.  He asked about what would happen to John, one of Jesus’ other disciples.  Jesus’ reply was essentially, “What business is that of yours?”  Instead, “As for you, follow Me.”  Jesus’ words give life to us now, to live in the now, to follow Him now.  When we live in the future, we’re not here!  We may miss the call to feed His sheep or the beauty that is happening around us.  Here’s my “What If” for us coaches and athletes: “What if we lived in the now, following God in the now, and letting go of all of the future possibilities and worries?” Our business is not the future; that is God’s.  Our business is the now, walking with God now, enjoying the day He has given us to love Him and love others.

  1. What’s one way you can remind yourself to follow Him now when your mind drifts to the What If’s?
  2. What’s your common “What If’ worry?  What might God be trying to teach you about that worry?
  3. What’s one opportunity or relationship that you see God doing now as a coach and athlete and how can you focus on that today?
  • Psalm 118:24
  • Philippians 4:8
  • Luke 9:23
Bible Reference: 
Psalms 118:24
Philippians 4:8
Luke 9:23
John 21:21-22