The prophet complains about what he sees as injustices in the world. Today he might write, “The rich are getting richer and the poor are getting poorer.” We know of injustices in the world and wonder how God stands by and lets them happen (Maybe God is wondering why we stand by and let them happen?).
The first two chapters of Habakkuk have been described as a lament or a dialogue between the prophet and God with the third chapter being Habakkuk's prayer. There is a sense of desperation in the prophet's voice--the fig tree does not bud, there are no grapes on the vine. Things are in bad shape (or at least that is how he sees it)--and yet, there is hope.
God is in control. Often our view is limited. Paul writes in I Corinthians that "we see in a mirror, dimly.." (13:11 NRSV). The King James reads, “We see through a glass, darkly...” We don't have a clear view. Our sight is limited -- but God sees through all of history. It is God who allows us to go to the heights - though our vision is still somewhat limited -- we get a glimpse beyond our normal, limited sight. In other words, Habakkuk speaks of faith. God is in control even when we may wonder.
This is faith. Faith that allows us to do ministry. To proclaim the Good News of the Gospel. To lift up a hope for tomorrow -- to believe that even though it may be night now, tomorrow will come. The sun will rise. This is the faith that sustains Christ's church. Faith that allows us to believe beyond the reality of today into the unknown of tomorrow. God is in the process of building a people. We may not know how the process is going to be accomplished but we know that it will - because God is doing it!|
My prayer for us over these slower summer days is that we will allow God to take us to the heights and give us a glimpse of what the view is like from the top! We are not alone. The Church of Christ continues to grow and expand. Evil will not win. We serve a God who believes in us, who died for us and who wants us to stand on the heights - even if only for a short time. Our work is in the valley -- our hope is on the heights. God has something planned for us - our task is to let God lead - let God take us to those heights and surprise us along the way at what we can do -- what God can do -- if we live by the adage of Habakkuk, "The Sovereign Lord is my strength..."