By Stan Rodda: The prophet Habakkuk has much to teach us 2600 years after his life and work. Habakkuk teaches us that when it comes to seasons of waiting, we must embrace God’s promises and His people. You can read that post here.
Habakkuk shares his burdens about the people of Judah with God. He asks God questions that all of us have probably asked God ourselves at one point or another. Questions like…
How long, Lord, will I call and You don’t listen?
When will You do something about this injustice?
When will You do something about this violence and evil?
Where are You?
And part of the answer that Habakkuk receives is found in his name. Habakkuk means to embrace or wrestle. When seasons of waiting come to us in life, we wrestle with God over our questions, but we also draw near to embrace Him in His faithfulness.
Wrestle. Embrace. Wrestle. Embrace.
Habakkuk shows us how to be disciples of Jesus in times when all we seem to have are unanswered questions. And part of our answer is that even in the wrestling, don’t give up. Draw near to God. Embrace Him and His promises.
The message of chapter 2 is clear; Wait on the Lord!
There are a lot of things we can hurry in this life. God is not one of them. We can hurry our kids out the door for school, or speed through traffic to make that meeting on time. But you can’t hurry God. It seems he is never in a rush, but somehow is always on time. All of us have been there. Wanting to rush God along with His answers. We’ve all been waiting on God at different times. Things like…
An answer to prayer
A glimmer of hope
Clarity on some issue
To end a pain
To begin healing
Habakkuk 2 teaches us that we will get there someday. And if there’s one over arching principle we must develop, one lesson to learn as disciples of Jesus it would be this…
Gain An Upper Story Perspective
Habakkuk positions himself in the lookout tower. When I think about a lookout tower, I think about old war movies. You see things from the tower you can’t see from the ground. Who is approaching your town? How many people are coming? Are they friend or foe? There’s a lot you can see when you get to higher ground to gain and upper story perspective.
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Habakkuk is searching and says he will go to the lookout tower to see what God will show him. And from there, Habakkuk learns at least three things. First,
There is a Natural Delay Between Planting and Harvesting
We are like Veruka Salt. Do you remember her? “I want it now. I want it my way.” Classic character from Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory. She deserved what was coming to her because her attitude was so annoying. Yet, that’s how we so often approach God. We want our answers and we want it now.
Rewarding career now!
To lose 20lbs now! (Just me?)
But between the planting of the seed of a tomato plant and the harvesting of that tomato, there’s a natural delay. A natural delay when you begin to sow into your marriage and when you reap the benefits. A natural delay when you begin to sow into disciple making and harvesting the fruit. Don’t get discouraged when you don’t get answers immediately. There’s a natural delay. Second,
There is a Bigger Battle Going on Around Us
Our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers of this darkness, against evil, spiritual forces in the heavens. [Ephesians 6:12 CSB]
Satan is here to steal, kill and destroy. He hates you. He hates your marriage. He hates your children. He hates your faith. He hates your attempts at disciple making. He hates when you point people to Jesus. And he is in complete opposition to you. Just ask Daniel.
In Daniel 10 we read that the angel carrying the answer to Daniel’s prayers was caught up in a battle for 21 days over Persia. He had to call in reinforcements to get free to respond to Daniel. There’s a bigger battle going on around us. There’s so much more to the story. If you hear nothing else in this post, please hear this…
God’s delays are not necessarily denials!
If you get stuck in a lower story perspective, it can be easy to get swept up in the idea that God has denied you. That you didn’t get an answer, or at least not the one you wanted. All we see is the discouragement of the lower story; family struggles, anxiety, fear, depression, national chaos. There is a spiritual battle raging in the heavenly realms. Get to the lookout tower. Gain that upper story perspective. Third,
God is at Work Preparing You for Amazing Things
Scripture tells us that God is at work in each of His children, bringing them to maturity. He is getting you ready for the future that is ahead of you. Disciple making opportunities you don’t even know about yet. Ministry opportunities you haven’t even considered. A fulfilling marriage that today seems has no hope. God is at work bringing you to completion and maturity.
I am sure of this, that He who started a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus. [Philippians 1:6 CSB]
It doesn’t do Habakkuk any good to pour over the The Jerusalem News or The Babylon Inquirer. It doesn’t do us any good either. Being informed is different from only having a lower story perspective. Being informed is different from feeding on the garbage of this world. Everything we take in as disciples of Jesus, no matter the media, should be viewed from the lookout tower, from the upper story perspective.
God, You are at work in our day. You are doing amazing things. You are preparing us for amazing things. And until I am clear on it, I will be in the lookout tower, waiting for Your answer.
But the Lord is in HIs holy temple; let the whole earth be silent in His presence. [Habakkuk 2:20 CSB]
When it comes to seasons of waiting on God for answers, there is no place like the lookout tower. The place where we gain an upper story perspective. Habakkuk reminds us…
There is a natural delay between planting and harvesting
There is a bigger battle going on around us
God is at work preparing you for amazing things
Have you found it difficult to maintain an upper story perspective in light of our recent history? What step do you need to take to regain it?
Let’s take Kingdom territory!
Source: Someday | Part 2