If Only
Hey friends,

Thanks so much for stopping by today, especially, if you've popping over from the Proverbs 31
On-line devotions.

Thanks for your posts regarding my latest question and opportunity to win a goodie gift bag.
Your answers are close to the correct answer. Keep posting, each post enters you in the contest to win the goodie gift bag.

My sister is in town from Dallas Texas and arrived just as the She Speaks Conference ended. Even though I was pooped we stayed up till way past a girls bedtime last night talking and laughing and believe it or not this very subject of "If Only" came up.

I think it's something most girls and women struggle with at some point in their lives; some of us more than others. How many times have I slipped back into the pit of "If Only"? Too many to count, BUT GOD in his mercy ALWAYS stoops down to rescue me, wrapping me in his cloak of "Glory" as Angela Thomas reminded us at the conference. I love this reminder and exhortation.

2 Thessalonians 1:11
With this in mind, we constantly pray for you, that our God may count you worthy of his calling, and that by his power he may fulfill every good purpose of
yours and every act prompted by your faith.

Are you looking to the Lord for your contentment? Or are you looking at other women, to fashion your ideas of success and worth. It's easy to see the lovely and gracious exterior, we take note of another woman's success, and we fall into the trap of “wanting what she has” and “wanting be just like her”.

Friends, if we re doing that we delude ourselves into thinking that life would be better if only… The truth is, we must remember our calling. We are to magnify and reflect the Glory of God in everything we do.

I hope you will will be reminded as I was to turn your eyes and your attention to the ONE who loves you with an everlasting love and wants to transform your "If Only" into "You Are".

What are your thoughts?






28 Comments:

Blogger Judymt25 said...

How the Lord spoke to my heart as I contemplated this devotional! You're right on target and I'm so thankful the Lord used you in my life today and I'm sure many others will also be blessed! Thank you, thank you, thank you for being willing to be used by Him.

Blogger Judymt25 said...

Oh my how the Lord used your devotional in my heart today! You are right on target! God has put each of us here for a specific purpose, a specific time and to affect specific people - and I was one of those affected! Thank you, thank you, thank you for being a blessing to me today!!!

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thank you Zoe for your devotion this morning "IF ONLY"... my IF ONLY is not based on the comparison of other women, but greiving for my husband to love me. In my time of feeling sorry for myself in the emotion of loneliness,our sweet and loving Savior whispers to me and says, the only love that should count is my love for you. My love excells all. I don't want any more IF ONLY'S...again our God crowns me with the crown of beauty. May I continue to be reminded of the deep love my Savior has for me.

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Oh Zoe, but you ARE beautiful! Thank you for this message!

Blogger imoomie said...

Thank you for the reminder Zoe! This is a beautiful, inspiring devo.

Have fun with your sister, I head out to see mine next week. Can't wait.

Anonymous Stephanie said...

Zoe,

Several years ago, when people seemed to be flying out of my life, I was so lonely. Sometimes when we walk where the Lord has called us to walk it can be a very lonely path. It was during this time the Lord touched my heart with these words, "Am I enough." I have always had a lot of people/friends around and I suppose I found a lot of significance through those friendships. Looking back, I realize God wanted me to find my significance in Him first and foremost. Today I can confidently proclaim, HE IS ENOUGH!!! The Lord has also blessed me with healthy friendships with healthy boundaries. "Seek ye first the Kingdom of God and all these things shall be added!"
Thanks for sharing Zoe....I love your heart for Jesus:))

Zoe,
This is an awesome message! I constantly need reminded about being Chosen for God but not comparing my "chosenness" to others.
Enjoyed sitting with you at the Women's Luncheon last Friday! You are a beautiful woman of Christ!
Amy King

Blogger Deanna said...

Thank you Zoe. This is just what I needed. I turned 50 and have been overweight all of my life. So, of course, I am always looking at slender women, their looks, their clothes, etc. Always paling in comparison. I need to learn to let go of this and live my life for God.

Anonymous Anonymous said...

I have never written a comment, and I read Proverbs 31 devotions each morning, but this one hit home with me. It is easy to say not to look up to or at anyone else as your model but when you are young and all seems lost your daydreaming is all you have. Sometimes that is what kept me going to the next day. Yes, now as an adult (very mature adult) I know more but still not better. I still slip and think back to "what if". I am just glad/thankful I had a Mother who prayed for me daily even till the day I lost her to this earth and into God's arms. Otherwise, I may not be able to say --- I know my Redeemer and one day I will be with Him and that is all that matters. Thanks for your devotions!

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi Zoe! AMEN this morning! I needed to hear that! I find myself doing that more than I like. I think sometimes we look at the "outside" of a person and think, they surely have it together but it's not the "outside" it's what is in the heart! Thank you so much for your transparency and your love for the Lord and sharing it with other women! Blessings to you!

Nancy

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi Zoe
First let me say you are most beautiful. I am trying to visit the blogs of all you girls at Proverbs31. You have no idea how your post hit home with me. It was not a cousin for me but my older sister. I finally came to the same conclusion just a few years ago that my heart is all that matters to the Almighty God. I hope I can meet you next year at the She Speaks. Have fun with your sister. Blessings...Kathy in Illinois

Anonymous KathyEllen said...

Zoe,

Your message today spoke to my heart. As a young girl, even though my parents told me that I was beautiful, I didn't believe it. Growing up in a family of 5 children, we didn't have much money, and my parents couldn't afford outfits like the other girls at school wore. I remember having 3 basic outfits for school, and my mother made me wear black oxfords with ankle socks until 8th grade. I always felt awkward and unattractive. It took me years into my adulthood to overcome those feelings of insecurity.

Blessed through the years with Jesus as my Savior, I have learned to have more confidence in myself and to be content in whatever situation I find myself. My husband and I met in our church and that bond of faith has been the center lynch pin of our marriage and family.

I know now that Jesus loves me just the way I am because I was created in His image.

Blogger Deb said...

Dear Zoe,
You have been reading my mail.....I've struggled with this alot lately, comparing myself and always coming up short....or fat or with less friends or less money......oh this is such a lie that we women deal with. I want to remember and live who I am in Christ,,,,His beloved daughter, with a mission just made for me to do in this life for His Glory,,,I am, by His creative hand in my life, all the past hurts, pains and joys designed by Him to mold me and use my life for the lives of others. What contentment we can find in Him.....I have peace just typing the truths of this.... my life with my God. Thank you for posting .
Deb

Anonymous Sarah said...

I had a great time sitting with you at lunch Saturday at She Speaks. What an amazing conference! I love your devotion! This is a keeper in my favorites! It is such a great reminder to look to God for approval and not man. Thank you! I'm so glad to have a reminder on those days when those "I'm not good enough" thoughs creep into my brain.

Blogger Zoe said...

Karyn said...
Oh my goodness. This devotional really hit home for me. I love the thoughts of following after and imitating Him instead of the women in my life I struggle to be like. Thank you for your words of wisdom and application steps.

7:51 AM

Anonymous said...
I so loved today's devotion.

I know my heavenly father uses the foolish things of this world to conform the wise, I watched a movie called "She's out of my league"... its about a guy rating himself a 5 in life based on his looks, abilities and so forth....

That night I went to bed and the Holy Spirit was ministering to me, see I always thought of myself as a 5 also... According to this worlds standards. But the Lord showed me that im a PERFECT 10 in his eyes.. and he is the only one who counts, because he created me.

And all you supper moms out their are a 10 ALSO !!!!

Naomi

9:00 AM

Teske @ Mommies with Hope said...
Zoe,

Thanks for sharing this piece of your heart, a heart that is sold out for Christ, resulting in a beautiful exterior that exudes Jesus! There is nothing more precious than that.

I was so encouraged by your devotion today and my heart leaped to Galatians 1:10, which says, "Am I now trying to win the approval of men, or of God? Or am I trying to please men? If I were still trying to please men, I would not be a servant of Christ." What a heart check, huh?

In Christ,
Teske

9:19 AM

Glynnis Whitwer said...
I'm going to print this devotion out and have my daughters read it. Thank you Zoe for writing such a beautiful invitation to follow after Jesus - in all ways. Love you!

9:55 AM

Emily said...
This reminds me of a song i heard the other day. The quote was "God didn't die so I could drive a Lexus, he died so that I could change the world."
I know that's not the same as physical appearance but our outwardly appearance falls into the "worldly things" category. And so everytime I stop and begin to wish for better things i.e cars, houses, hair, perfect looks. I think of this song and remember that that is not the reason he died for us.
Thank you for this devotion!
-Em

10:08 AM

LauraLee Shaw said...
Zoe, love this testimony, and you grabbed my heart here:
...we were not created to have the perfect exterior appearance or gain the world's attention; we were created to live a life worthy of our calling and to reflect the beauty of our Lord Jesus Christ. As we do that our lives will draw others to the saving knowledge of Christ.

I'm well familiar with attempts to be like others in my past. It's the reason I went from one hobby and activity to another...trying to find the one I would be the "best" at. After many years of striving, I tossed my cape of self-effort and began to wear Jesus instead. HE is my life, and my life is now hidden in Him. So thankful to be on the journey with you, sister!

10:28 AM

MrsLouis01 said...
Awesome word indeed. I have "miles" worth of "If Onlys". But I thank God that I am learning daily that my focus needs to be on Him ONLY if I am to be a success in the Kingdom and most of all, my identity comes from Him.

12:28 PM

Blogger Zoe said...

Karyn said...
Oh my goodness. This devotional really hit home for me. I love the thoughts of following after and imitating Him instead of the women in my life I struggle to be like. Thank you for your words of wisdom and application steps.

7:51 AM

Blogger Zoe said...

Anonymous said...
I so loved today's devotion.

I know my heavenly father uses the foolish things of this world to conform the wise, I watched a movie called "She's out of my league"... its about a guy rating himself a 5 in life based on his looks, abilities and so forth....

That night I went to bed and the Holy Spirit was ministering to me, see I always thought of myself as a 5 also... According to this worlds standards. But the Lord showed me that im a PERFECT 10 in his eyes.. and he is the only one who counts, because he created me.

And all you supper moms out their are a 10 ALSO !!!!

Naomi

9:00 AM

Blogger Zoe said...

Teske @ Mommies with Hope said...
Zoe,

Thanks for sharing this piece of your heart, a heart that is sold out for Christ, resulting in a beautiful exterior that exudes Jesus! There is nothing more precious than that.

I was so encouraged by your devotion today and my heart leaped to Galatians 1:10, which says, "Am I now trying to win the approval of men, or of God? Or am I trying to please men? If I were still trying to please men, I would not be a servant of Christ." What a heart check, huh?

In Christ,
Teske

Blogger Zoe said...

Glynnis Whitwer said...
I'm going to print this devotion out and have my daughters read it. Thank you Zoe for writing such a beautiful invitation to follow after Jesus - in all ways. Love you!

9:55 AM

Blogger Zoe said...

Emily said...
This reminds me of a song i heard the other day. The quote was "God didn't die so I could drive a Lexus, he died so that I could change the world."
I know that's not the same as physical appearance but our outwardly appearance falls into the "worldly things" category. And so everytime I stop and begin to wish for better things i.e cars, houses, hair, perfect looks. I think of this song and remember that that is not the reason he died for us.
Thank you for this devotion!
-Em

Blogger Zoe said...

LauraLee Shaw said...
Zoe, love this testimony, and you grabbed my heart here:
...we were not created to have the perfect exterior appearance or gain the world's attention; we were created to live a life worthy of our calling and to reflect the beauty of our Lord Jesus Christ. As we do that our lives will draw others to the saving knowledge of Christ.

I'm well familiar with attempts to be like others in my past. It's the reason I went from one hobby and activity to another...trying to find the one I would be the "best" at. After many years of striving, I tossed my cape of self-effort and began to wear Jesus instead. HE is my life, and my life is now hidden in Him. So thankful to be on the journey with you, sister!

10:28 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thank you for "If only" it means alot to me. It has been the reality of my life lately. My husband graciously reminded me that outward appearance should not be an obsession after i made it one. Jesus through my husband also told me that i can not live self centered focusing on myself w& my looks when I should be focused on Jesus& my family. When we let the media tell us who we should be we stop listening to Gods still small voice. The enemy bounds us with unrealistic expectations and sin but Jesus the prince of peace, Everlasting Father sets us free.

Anonymous grace said...

Thank you for your devotional and blog entry today! It encourages me to leave the past behind and move forward.
Have a wonderful visit with your sister and her kids. Have fun making memories.
God Bless,
Grace

Blogger Leanne said...

Thank you, it is hard in this day and age not to fall into that trap of "if only"

God Bless
Leanne

Anonymous Kirsten said...

What an incredible message! This is just what I needed to hear today :)

Blogger Cynthia said...

I always told my children as they were growing up we don't do "what ifs". If only is sort of the same thing for me. We need to be reminded who's we are and that He does love us. He is compassionate and forgiving.
Thank you for your devotional today.

Anonymous tamarahenionblogspot.com said...

Heard of you through a couple of friends and thought I'd check out your blog.
My thoughts are simple in re to today's post:

If only
You are...

I AM!

Not I, but Christ.

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thank you, Zoe, for your wonderful insights. Your words are a blessing to my heart. They remind me of a dear friend I met 22 years ago when I first moved to this town. As a child, her family had not had a lot to live on, and as a result, she grew up struggling with self-worth. As an adult, however, I am happy to say that she came to realize and embrace the love of Christ and now receives her worth from HIM. And not only receives His love, but is so filled up with it that it spills over into others' lives, just like with you. Thank you, Zoe.

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