Habbakuk is the must read book in times of trouble. For in times of trouble it’s natural that we turn to and embrace and wrestle with God. And this is what his name means… to wrestle or embrace. In times of trouble we moan. Our hearts cry out, “Why God, why!”
And this moaning is the trademark of Habbakuk’s intercession and questioning of God.
Habakkuk questions the existence of evil. His questions as to why evil seems to prosper and good people suffer. It’s the age old question that we to are faced with today. While it is easy to give pat answers, the truth is that we also question God asking; “Are you Really in control?”
This question is currently brokered within the life of our college and greater Christian community even if it’s not spoken out. It’s birthed in our hearts and they cry out in regards to the freakish accident and the ongoing health problems that have happened to our beloved Dr Shane Clifton.
Through the book of Habakkuk God answers him about what he is going to do. And Habakkuk recoils in horror saying, “No way…you call this justice?” And in the same way we also respond if we if we don’t get the answer from God that we pray for. We question God’s justice, we question our faith. We question whether we heard from God correctly or not.
We watch the news and cry out about the violence, the legal injustice, strife within the community and the world and other wrongs. Non Christians slam Christians down with the question of “Why is there so much evil? Show me your God”
And Habakkuk shows us the truth, in that there are no real answers to give. Instead what is birthed is real relationship. Within Pentecostalism there is a scripture that is much misquoted in that… “What ever you desire, if you seek the Lord it will be yours”
However the true meaning of this comes out of the Exodus narrative story where God says… If you seek me with all your heart, mind and soul… you will find what you seek… which is GOD
Habakkuk gets to the stage of life where he is able to say to God,
Hab 3:17 Though the fig tree should not blossom, nor fruit be on the vines, the produce of the olive fail and the fields yield no food, the flock be cut off from the fold and there be no herd in the stalls,
Hab 3:18 yet I will rejoice in the LORD; I will take joy in the God of my salvation.
For he goes onto say; GOD, the Lord, is my strength; he makes my feet like the deer’s; he makes me tread on my high places
There come times in our life where we too must be able to rejoice in the Lord because he is God and not because of what he does for us. I used to have a favourite saying a number of years ago for which the Lord rebuked me, telling me not to say it…its only now I have come to know why. It was
There is one thing I like more than praying and that is getting answers to prayer…of course to get an answer one has to first pray.
For without knowing it, I had my priorities wrong. God should be my number one priority and his being is sufficient in my life… the Apostle Paul had the same revelation after begging 3 times and being told no by God with the reply… “My grace is sufficient for you”
This then must be the lesson we learn from Habakkuk. God grants us grace within the context of relationship. He is our reward. And from this reward grace continually springs forth where God beckons all who are heavily burdened to come to him for his burden is light and his yoke is easy. And within this context faith is exercised in that God is with us…