Pastor Chris wraps up our series on the book of Habakkuk with part 3. And this book is an interesting one. The book, centered around the prophet Habakkuk, was one one of the 12 minor prophets in the Old Testament. He originally was a musician from the Temple but was promoted up to Priest. Then God called him to be a prophet. Written around 600BC give or take a few years. However, what’s interesting is he’s the only prophet to push back to God. He is the only one of the 12 to push back. Pushing back on the message that God wants him to share with the people. It is written during the time of increasing corruption and violence in society.
Chapter 1 was about holding on to God and embracing or wrestling with Him during these times of coming into the “dip.” Chapter 2 of the book talks about what do we do when we are in the “dip.” And part 3 from chapter 3 we watch Habakkuk come out of the dip and find 3 principles we can apply to our lives.
The first thing that we see Habakkuk do is remember. Habakkuk 3:2-3 says, “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. God came from Teman, the Holy One from Mount Paran. Sleah! His glory covered the heaven and his praise filled the earth.” Habakkuk says, “God I remember what you did this miracle. And you showed up huge here and did this incredible thing. Do it again! Renew them again for us!” When you find yourself in the dip waiting for what God is going to do, remember what He did before. Continue to believe who God is and that He can and He will do it again. Do not forget, but remember.
The second thing is to accept. Accept what God has either told you, or what is going on around you. Too often we move into the HITS (head in the sand) phase. We deny what is going on around us. Thinking it will either fix itself or we just ignore the problem. Habakkuk says in 3:16, “I heard and my heart pounded, my lips quivered at the sound; decay crept into my bones, and my legs trembled.” Habakkuk knows what God has said is going to come true and its not going to be pretty. People are going to die, he himself probably will die and lots of people are going to suffer. Habakkuk does not put his head in the sand but rather accepts what God says. But he does not stop there. This leads us to the third point.
Habakkuk trusts. He does not understand what God is doing. It does not make sense to use the Babylonian people to punish the Israelite people. Taking a far worse group of people to punish them. However God is has promised Habakkuk that Babylon will get what they deserve in due time. Habakkuk 3:16-18 says, “Yet I will wait patiently for the day of calamity to come on the nation invading us. 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, yet I will rejoice in the LORD, I will be joyful in God my Savior.”
Even though Habakkuk does not understand. When Habakkuk looks around at the world it does not make sense, he trusts in God. Even though the fig tree does not bud, the field does not produce any food. And there are no sheep in the pen and no cattle in the stalls, yet he will trust, he will rejoice in the Lord! Here is what God has taught me through my time in my journey with Christ time and time and time again. Get this! I have walked with Jesus for enough yesterdays, that I can trust Him with all of my tomorrows.
Here is the final verse from the book of Habakkuk, (Habakkuk 3:19) “The Sovereign LORD is my strength; he makes my feet like the feet of a deer, he enables me to go on the heights.” Habakkuk is saying that even though the world around him does not make sense, there is trouble, he does not like what God is telling him, and that his waiting in the dip is painful, I trust God. He trusts God who is his strength that through this time God will take his faith and relationship with his Heavenly Father to new heights! You cannot have great faith and a great relationship with God without a chapter 1 crisis of belief and question, as well as a chapter 2 time in the dip which will take you to new heights with God. God will do more in our lives in the dip than on the mountain top.