I can remember the first time one of my daughters responded to my fatherly advice with the phrase; “whatever!” I could feel the hair on the back of my neck stand up, my ears were ringing due to my blood pressure reaching stroke levels and my hands tingling from being clinched so tightly the blood stop flowing through them. My daughter to this day does not realize how much grace God poured out on her life that day by restraining me from ending hers. OK, He gave me grace upon grace in my time of need that day too.
But, since that day I have heard that phrase used countless times by people of all ages. It has become one of those defining words of our society. Whatever! That word has led to another word that is overused in our society; tolerance! If whatever is accepted, why shouldn’t we be tolerant. Whatever will be will be; Que Sera Sera!
Words can set a city on fire or send countries to war with one another. The word whatever has created a mind-set of entitlement and in the process devalued human worth and dignity. The process of thought is whatever is best for me and whatever you can do for me that have become the attitudes that define our relationships.
If we want to avoid a question or belittle the opinion of others, we just arrogantly proclaim; whatever! The word is used as an escape hatch to avoid any personal responsibility we are confronted with and we have become comfortable using it, until it is used against us. Prov 18:21 “Death and life are in the power of the tongue, And those who love it will eat its fruit.” We can live by the sword or die by it, but whatever?
Teenagers, there is a time and place for all things including the words we speak. Words spoken at the wrong moment or place can be devastating to all who are within an ear shot of them. You have probably been hurt by a whatever attitude of someone else’s words and there is no justifying them with a whatever answer.
God has not created you for just whatever! He didn’t send His Son Jesus Christ to this earth to do just whatever. He sent Him here to express His love for you by dying on the cross for your sins. A whatever answer to His expression of love for you dishonors Him and robs you of a new life and the joy of knowing Him.
Here is your time and place to use the word, whatever. Lord, whatever it takes I want to know You. Whatever you want me to do, I’ll do it for You are whatever I need! Whatever Lord!