Obstacles and adversaries.
They never matter until they get in the way of something you really want or believe is your right, yes? I mean, it’s HARD to persevere when it seems like everything’s going against you! What are you supposed to do when, more than want, you know you have a Jesus-sanctioned right to something, that keeps escaping your grasp?
That’s what the prophet Habakkuk asked, more like whined, in “his” self-titled book. As a prophet of Israel he knew the blessing associated with God’s chosen people, but what he saw didn’t measure up. Israel’s enemies were trouncing (love that word) her and it seemed like the Lord was absent. In fact, it almost seemed to Habakkuk like the Lord was all for Israel’s demise and Habakkuk didn’t know what to do with that, but to cry out for answers.
Then the Lord answered me and said: “Write the vision and make it plain on tablets, that he may run who reads it. For the vision is yet for an appointed time; but at the end it will speak, and it will not lie. Though it tarries, wait for it; because it will surely come, it will not tarry.
You may be familiar with these verses, but you know what? Though I’ve heard them preached and I’ve quoted them many times, I’ve never understood them in context of this entire book before now.
Context is everything, especially when it comes to the Word.
These verses are the Lord’s answer after Habakkuk’s second complaint. Here’s my summary of both complaints. “We’re getting our behinds kicked and I thought since You’re holy, You would have shut these people down by now.”
How does the Lord respond? He tells Habakkuk to write down the word picture, the vision, He’s about to give him, so when Habakkuk reads it, it will encourage him. Though it may take time, it WILL happen and when it does, it’ll be right on time (I love that!).
Then the Lord goes on to vividly describe how He’s going to handle those who came against His people. By the time He finished, Habakkuk’s jaw had dropped, and he essentially says, “I knew You were awesome, but You’re blowing my mind right now!”
There’s a principle in there for us today. What do you do when we stand on the Lord’s promises, only to see all hell break loose against it? First of all, write down what He promised in full detail, so you can read it over and over. You want His perspective, not yours, so rehearse it till you’re convinced, it’s on its way. It’s only a matter of time. AND watch God handle anything and anyone who tries to get in the path of what He’s planned for you! Then you’ll testify like Habakkuk…
The Lord God is my strength; He will make my feet like deer’s feet, And He will make me walk on my high hills. Habakkuk 3:19
I’ve gotten my pen out. Have you?