My fellow Christians, is it me, or does it seem like we are living in a time where rebellion against God is at an all time high? It seems like a ‘Amber Alert’ is announced daily. Violence, injustice, evil…what is going on? Many are left asking themselves, “God, why aren’t you doing anything?”
Well that is the same question Habakkuk asked when his people rebelled against God and ignored His word. Sure enough, God did react to their wickedness. He sent the Babylonians to punish his people, which made no sense because the Babylonians were worse than the Israelites.
Have you ever heard stories of true, faithful believers just suddenly die in a car accident? Or, a story of an innocent child dying without a cause? Why does God allow this? It doesn’t seem to make any sense. What do you do when life doesn’t make sense?
Habakkuk chapter 3 gives us a great example of what we should do when life doesn’t make sense.
1. Remember what God has done in the past
Look back and remember the character and faithfulness of God. When Habakkuk feels that God doesn’t seem fair he remembers some tangible things that God did in the past for his people.
Habakkuk 3:1-5 – “A prayer of Habakkuk the prophet. 2 LORD, I have heard of your fame; I stand in awe of your deeds, O LORD. Renew them in our day, in our time make them known; in wrath remember mercy. 3 God came from Teman, the Holy One from Mount Paran. His glory covered the heavens and his praise filled the earth. 4 His splendor was like the sunrise; rays flashed from his hand, where his power was hidden. 5 Plague went before him; pestilence followed his steps.”
What’s Habakkuk talking about? He’s remembering what God did when he rescued his people from Egypt. How he sent the plagues on Egypt and how he parted the Red Sea and wiped out Pharaoh’s army and delivered his people. He goes on:
Habakkuk 3:6-15 – “He stood, and shook the earth; he looked, and made the nations tremble. The ancient mountains crumbled and the age-old hills collapsed. His ways are eternal. 7 I saw the tents of Cushan in distress, the dwellings of Midian in anguish. 8 Were you angry with the rivers, O LORD ? Was your wrath against the streams? Did you rage against the sea when you rode with your horses and your victorious chariots? 9 You uncovered your bow, you called for many arrows. You split the earth with rivers; 10 the mountains saw you and writhed. Torrents of water swept by; the deep roared and lifted its waves on high. 11 Sun and moon stood still in the heavens at the glint of your flying arrows, at the lightning of your flashing spear. 12 In wrath you strode through the earth and in anger you threshed the nations. 13 You came out to deliver your people, to save your anointed one. You crushed the leader of the land of wickedness, you stripped him from head to foot. 14 With his own spear you pierced his head when his warriors stormed out to scatter us, gloating as though about to devour the wretched who were in hiding. 15 You trampled the sea with your horses, churning the great waters.”
When Habakkuk looks around and says “Life doesn’t make sense” he remembers what God has done in the past. This acts like an anchor to him. We too can remember what God has done.
I remember when our second daughter was born, money was scarce. My wife and I were stressed to say the least. One night, the Lord instructed me to look in an old brief case I hadn’t seen since moving to the United States. Obeying the Lord, a large amount of money was discovered in the inside pocket. Maybe you’re saying “I don’t have moments like that.”
But maybe for you it was when you went to church and that day when you heard the message it was like God was speaking directly to you. Or maybe it was when you opened the Bible and the verse jumped out at you was exactly what you need to hear. That’s remembering what God has done in your life in the past. God has done great things in all of our lives, and when life doesn’t make sense, the way to get anchored and steady is to remember the good things that God has done for us in the past. The greatest thing he has done was he sent his Son to die for us. When you ever doubt God’s love remember the Word of God which says: Romans 5:8 – “But God demonstrated his love for us in this: While we were still sinners Christ died for us.”
2. Accept what God is doing in the present
Habakkuk 3:16 – “I heard and my heart pounded, my lips quivered at the sound; decay crept into my bones, and my legs trembled. Yet I will wait patiently for the day of calamity to come on the nation invading us.”
Habakkuk realized that what God said was going to come to pass, and it wasn’t going to be pleasant. God had said that he would destroy the Babylonians. And though things didn’t make sense for the moment, Habakkuk was accepting of what God was doing.
The difficulties and the trials you are facing right now are not an accident. God has allowed it for a reason. And though the reason might not seem clear, accept what God is doing in the present. And thirdly,
3. Trust and praise God no matter what he does in the future
When life doesn’t make sense now, Habakkuk teaches us to trust and praise God no matter what the future may hold. Listen to these amazing words:
Habakkuk 3:17-18 – “Though the fig tree does not bud and there are no grapes on the vines, though the olive crop fails and the fields produce no food, though there are no sheep in the pen and no cattle in the stalls, 18 yet I will rejoice in the LORD, I will be joyful in God my Savior. 19 The Sovereign LORD is my strength; he makes my feet like the feet of a deer, he enables me to go on the heights.”
Do you hear what he’s saying? Habakkuk is saying, “God even if you send suffering and loss on us (in the form of the Babylonian invasion) I will still praise you and love you and rejoice in you.”
This is the kind of faith that God wants us to have. It’s the faith that keeps trusting God no matter what is happening. It’s the faith that trusts God no matter what the circumstances. Even when life doesn’t make sense. You might lose your job or lose your best friend or lose your health, but faith keeps praising God and thanking him. Amen.
Scripture of the day: “Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding;” ~ Proverbs 3:5 NIV
Pastor Peter Okereke Jr.
The Living Word Ministries Inc.
Copyright Reserved, 2011.
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