Those are two words that can bring fear and dread to the human soul. “Whatever happens”… This morning as I was reading in Philippians 3 meditating on the word, letting God search my heart with it, my eyes kept going back to the very fist verse (NLT)
1 Whatever happens, my dear brothers and sisters,rejoice in the Lord. I never get tired of telling you these things, and I do it to safeguard your faith.
Whatever happens. That’s a wide open field, this whatever.
*So if I loose my job, I’m to rejoice in the Lord.
*If my son goes back to using heroin, I’m to rejoice in the Lord.
*If something awful were to happen to my precious little boy, I’m to rejoice in the Lord.
*If my house burns to the ground, I’m to rejoice in the Lord.
This is hard, this whatever is getting personal. It’s infringing on my idea of what I think God should be protecting. All my loved ones, all my stuff. So if whatever happens, does that mean He’s not?
That’s the gut reaction of the world. If bad happens; then there is no God or they don’t want to know the God that could let it happen. If something good happens; they might give him the credit. Phil 3:1 says “whatever” good, bad, ugly, painful, devastating, exciting, lovely. It covers a mass of things. Over which I am to rejoice in the Lord!
This is where the rubber hits the road on our faith doesn’t it. The very end of that verse tells us why Paul is reminding us of this. To safe guard that faith as the rubber hits the road. Because when the “whatever” hits the fan of your life, if your are not reminding yourself by being in the word, and by letting the word be in YOU, how will you ever be able to rejoice in Him when the “whatever” is bad, and will you give Him the glory when it’s good.
So I remind myself and you… “Whatever happens… rejoice in the LORD!”
Sigh. I know it's true, but it's still hard.
Whatever happens is a hard pill to swallow…it's easy to choke on. However, most of what we fear doesn't ever happen, and most of what does happen makes us stronger in the long run–even if it pushes us to a near breaking point. Whatever happens, God is with you…and so am I!