The prophet Habakkuk saw all around him a lost world and he was saddened by it. He cried out to God honestly, asking Him why he was allowing it to happen. Yet through it all, he knew that God was in control and that one day He would intervene.
How long, Lord, must I call for help and You do not listen or cry out to You about violence and you do not save? Why do you force me to look at injustice? Why do you tolerate wrongdoing? … Strife is ongoing, and conflict escalates. – Habukkuk 1:2-3 CSB
Tragedy and pain in this world are nothing new, and neither are the cries of “Why?!” from God’s people!
The Lord replied, “Look around at the nations; look and be amazed! For I am doing something in your own day, something you wouldn’t believe even if someone told you about it.” – Habakkuk 1:5 NLT
But God’s presence throughout is unchanging. He is always there, working out His eternal plan. If He gave us the full answer when we asked for it, it would be far beyond our understanding. If He peeled back the curtain to reveal what was going on behind the scenes, we would not be able to handle it.
“For the vision is yet for the appointed [future] time. It hurries toward the goal [of fulfillment]; it will not fail. Even though it delays, wait [patiently] for it, Because it will certainly come; it will not delay.” – Habakkuk 2:2 (The Amplified Translation)
We have a tendency to think God is taking too long to work out His plan, but we cannot grasp the concept of eternity. The lifetime we spend here on earth is only a tiny fraction of the timeline God sees. Whatever it is that God plans to accomplish will come to pass… at exactly the moment He intends it to.
“Look at the proud! They trust in themselves, and their lives are crooked. But the righteous will live by their faithfulness to God.” – Habakkuk 2:4 NLT
It may seem during some of the worst times that the worst people have the best outcomes, but that is not the end of the story! We need to keep our focus on God and on His Word. He has promised us over and over again that if we put our faith in Him, the outcome will be perfect peace and eternal joy.
Lord, I have heard the report about you; Lord, I stand in awe of your deeds. – Habakkuk 3:2 CSB
The Bible is full of stories of God’s saving work in the lives of His people. We can see the work of His hands in countless lives throughout history, even our own. When we are tempted to believe that God has removed His hand, we need only reflect on His unfailing faithfulness.
In this time of our deep need, help us again as you did in years gone by. And in your anger, remember mercy. – Habakkuk 3:2 NLT
You went forth for the salvation of Your people. – Habakkuk 3:13 NASB
God showed us undeserved mercy when He sent Jesus to pay the price for our sins so that we could be saved. We do not deserve mercy, and yet God continues to lovingly give it. Time and time again He intervenes to save us. Do it again, Lord!
Even though the fig trees have no blossoms, and there are no grapes on the vines; even though the olive crop fails, and the fields lie empty and barren; even though the flocks die in the fields, and the cattle barns are empty, yet I will rejoice in the Lord! I will be joyful in the God of my salvation! The Sovereign Lord is my strength! He makes me as surefooted as a deer, able to tread upon the heights. – Habakkuk 3:17-19 NLT
Even (and especially) when it seems as though there is no hope, we need to put our faith in the God who saves! He is our strength and only He can keep us in the storm and through it!