I don’t know about you, but the “What If-fer” part of my brain has had quite the workout during this unsettling time.
Matt. 6:27, “Can any one of you by worrying add a single hour to your life?” Worry is ineffective. Not only does it NOT add an hour to your life, it turns out Jesus knew even in His lifetime on Earth that worry effects your health and can even shorten your life! The truth is that worry messes with your immune system, and you want a strong immune system to fight off any virus exposure.
Is your What Iffer still working overtime?
The Power of a Single Word
I propose that we change 1 word since I don’t know how to perform an Iffer-ectomy to completely remove my iffer. Instead of WHAT if (the question), let’s move to EVEN if (the statement).
You see, God promised to be with us as we travel through life’s rough patches. Is. 43:2 says, When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and when you pass through the rivers, they will not overwhelm you; and when you walk through fire, you shall not be burned and the flame will not consume you.”
A couple of notes here:
- You can’t stop moving. You can’t just sit down and wallow in your circumstances. THROUGH is in this verse 3 times!
- God’s presence is a promise
- We are promised to NOT be overwhelmed, burned, or consumed by flame. And we have documentation of this truth!
Rack, Shack & Benny
In Daniel 3:8-30, we have the story of 3 young men with unusual name: Shadrach, Meshack, and Abednego – or Rack, Shack & Benny as my favorite talking vegetables would say. Their King was manipulated into ordering that all people worship his golden statue. These 3 refused because they only worship God. The punishment was to be tied up and thrown into a fire. Alive.
Their answer to the King’s last plea for their compliance? Dan. 3:17, “If we are thrown into the blazing furnace, the God we serve IS ABLE TO DELIVER US FROM IT…(18) But EVEN IF He does not, we want you to know, Your Majesty, that we will not serve your gods or worship the image of gold you have set up.”
Stoke the Fire
So the king super-heated the furnace 7x more than usual, tied up the THREE guys and had them tossed in. The fire was so hot that it killed the soldiers who tossed them.
But the manipulative advisors notice something strange. There were FOUR men walking around in the fire! Verse 27 tells us that when they were called out of the fire, “the fire had not harmed their bodies, nor was a hair of their heads singed; their robes were not scorched, and there was no smell of fire on them.”
King Nebuchadnezzar praised God and instituted a decree of protection for any who worship the God of Israel. In other words, HE NOTICED.
- How can we assure that our prayers and thoughts line up with what God wants? (see Matt. 6:33-34)
- If we are speaking our What ifs aloud, does that have any effect on us? (see Prov. 18:21)
Based on Ps 91:4-6, “He will cover you with his feathers and under his wings you will find refuge; his faithfulness will be your shield and rampart. You will not fear the terror of night, nor the arrow that flies by day, not the pestilence that stalks in the darkness,” illustrate God’s safety system. I have mine below.
Father God, Help me lock my iffer into Even if mode where I can see Your hand at work and trust you more fully.