and if not

from the and if not reading plan

Daniel 3:1-23

BY Hayley Morgan

Text: Daniel 3:1-23

“And if not…”

I feel like that’s the rally cry of my faith. I hold on to the idea that Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego had. I believe that God will show up, that He will show up here on Earth and move in His people and move mountains.

“And, if not…”

And if not, He is still good. He is still the King Most High. He alone is still worthy of our worship. It is still worth it. It would be far better for me to perish than to live a life of bowing down to a lesser god.

We may not live under a government that dictates who or what we can worship, but how often do we voluntarily allow idols to take residence in our life? Comfort, safety, health, wealth. How often do we bow down and sacrifice for those things?

I have hopes. I have desires. If I’m honest, sometimes I hope God’s desires line up with my desires for my life, not the other way around.

But, I believe I’d give up comfort, safety, health and wealth to more fully know God. I believe that giving up those things would benefit me here on Earth. And, if not, I have the comfort of knowing there is glory in Eternity.

Do you have something you are hoping God will show up and do? Do you trust that He is good to grant that desire? Do you trust that He is also good in the “And, if not…”?


Post Comments (69)

69 thoughts on "and if not"

  1. Laura says:

    I'm 16 and sometimes struggle with being motivated to read the Bible regularly. Since I discovered the She Reads Truth plans I am much more excited about digging into Scripture! :) Thank you to everyone who was involved in writing these.
    Regarding this particular devotion:
    I'm a writer at heart, and I feel it's something God has called me to do. Every time I see a verse like "If a man is gifted with teaching, let him teach; if a man loves preaching, let him preach," I can feel God saying, "And if you are a writer, then write!" I'm currently revising my first book.
    The struggle is, I know that deep down I crave earthly approval. I started this fantasy story with the intention of making it accessible to the secular world, but also firmly grounded in faith in God & Christian principles. But as I wrote, I… got scared that people would be turned off by the religious undertones. I found myself suppressing what should have been the heart of my story: my faith. Over the summer, as I was getting ready to edit what I'd written, God impressed upon me: "What will you have to say for yourself when you die, if all you ever did was write a story that people loved? Isn't it better to touch one life than to make hundreds happy?"
    I want to be brave in how I present elements of God, faith, and purpose in life, but I also don't want to alienate those who don't believe in God. I'm on the verge of entering a major writing contest that could be a big deal if I win, and as much as I want to do well, I want to want God's will even more. He knows what is best for me! I have a chance at this contest, I hope… and if not? HE HAS SOMETHING BETTER. I know God has promised to give me the desire of my heart, and I truly believe He will do something with my love of stories — but if He decides to do that in a way CONTRARY TO MY PLANS, I want to be open to that. I don't want to look back on my life and say, "I was successful. What a waste of time." I want to look back and say, "I honored the Author of my life, and I'm proud of that."
    So… (well, this post ran away from me!)… I'm needing prayers that God aligns my will with His, and that He doesn't let me get in the way of what He wants to do. Thanks! :) God bless.

  2. kjshepp says:

    I think sometimes I can use these words "and if not. . ." in a unhealthy way. In a way where I am really not showing faith, but somehow giving God an "out", or making an excuse for Him (if what I'm praying for doesn't happen). It has been a journey for me to recognize this and to realize God doesn't need my "out", He wants my faith. My faith saying like Shadrack, "He can rescue us. . . .(this is the faith part, absolutely believing that HE CAN do what I am asking) but even if He doesn't rescue (not because He can't) I TRUST His soverign plan for me-I don't have to understand it and probably won't most of the times, BUT like the "boys" I CHOOSE to trust him no matter the outcome. It's the same words either way, but in my heart there is a huge difference.

  3. Kristine says:

    I rarely comment on posts, but this study has been so powerful to me. I am struggling now with some things, not huge things in the grand scheme of life but things that would have a big impact on my family. I am not good at waiting and I want so badly to have a faith big enough to say "and if not…" Yes many times I also pay that God's plan matches my own. And when it doesn't I am disappointed. I am struggling right now because we are in a situation that has some time constraints as far as having to make some decisions. I want to fully trust that God will reveal His plan for us, but at the same time I know that we need to be proactive and need to start preparing for whatever choice we make. In all honesty I find myself worrying more than trusting some days. I worry that we will have to make a decision without knowing which way God wants us to go. I want so badly to hear his voice and be able to move forward with the confidence in knowing we are following his plan.
    I just read back what I wrote and was tempted to delete it because I feel so embarrassed by my thoughts compared to all the strong and faithful posts I see. But perhaps someone will have words of wisdom for me. How do you know when you hear God s voice? How do you know? I think I will be spending quite some time on my knees today. Thank you God for this study and the powerful words of these ladies.

    1. Tammy says:

      Kristine, I am like you in that I don't think I have ever commented before. When I am faced with situations like the one you have described it helps me to remember Proverbs 16:3. "Commit to The Lord whatever you do and he will establish your plans." Have faith that he will not allow you to choose the wrong path if you are seeking his will. I find that sometimes one choice is not necessarily better than another, but the most important thing is to do His will, to serve Him, in the thing that I choose. I will pray that if God doesn't want you to proceed with something he will close those " opportunities" to you.

    2. Jesyka says:

      Thank you for commenting, Kristine. I really appreciate your honesty. I’m glad you didn’t delete it. :)
      This isn’t gospel or anything, and I don’t know what you are trying to make a decision about, but when I’m in the situation of needing to take a step without confidence or peace from The Lord, I have to remind myself that in most situations, if I take a step in the wrong direction, He will let me know so I can correct it. I can about face. He knows my heart is to do His will and He wants to help me do that.

      But sometimes, He just wants me to choose-there isn’t a wrong choice in that particular matter.

      It’s just discerning what type of situation I’m in.

      You’re in the right place on this, seeking His will…spending time on your knees.

      Praying for peace and discernment for you!


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