O Lord my God, my Holy One, you who are eternal— surely you do not plan to wipe us out? O Lord, our Rock, you have sent these Babylonians to correct us, to punish us for our many sins. But you are pure and cannot stand the sight of evil. Will you wink at their treachery? Should you be silent while the wicked swallow up people more righteous than they? Habakkuk 1:12-13
Good parents hate to see their child in pain, but sometimes a trip to the doctor's office for a shot is necessary. Really good parents hold their child's hand as they a shot and say, "It's going to be okay." When children are not old enough to understand the purpose of shots, they may wonder why their parent made them go to the doctor for a painful shot in the first place. Failing to realize the importance of that shot, they may question their parents' character. When they are older, they begin to understand that sometimes shots are necessary and they discover that their parents had been acting in their best interest the entire time. They begin to trust their parents because their parents have proven themselves to be trustworthy. They have proven their character.
In Habakkuk 1:12-17, Habakkuk considered God's character. You see, God had just told him that He was sending the Babylonians to capture the Israelites because of their sin and unfaithfulness to Him. As Habakkuk processed this news, he begged God not to let the Babylonians decimate the Israelites and go unpunished. He also thought about God's character. In essence, Habakkuk said to God "God, I know You are good and holy. The Babylonians will not get away with capturing Israel, right?" He could have simply said, "God, how could You!" Instead, in his hurt and confusion, he recalled God's character. He remembered that God is holy. He cannot tolerate wickedness. Perhaps, remembering God's character in his storm brought Habakkuk a glimmer of hope and peace, knowing that God will not act against His character. Because of this, evil would ultimately be punished and justice would be administered in Habakkuk's storm.
We have all been in Habakkuk's shoes, haven't we? When we face a storm in our lives we may wonder how a good and holy God could allow such a storm to happen. Rather than question God's character during our storm, when we pray to God in our heartache, we should follow Habakkuk's example and remember God's character. He is good, perfect, holy, and loving. Like a good father, he has proven His character to us. He is with us in our storm and will continue to be good, perfect, holy, and loving.
There is no person who is immune from facing storms in their life. The good news is that we are not meant to face storms alone. We have the ability to encourage each other throughout our storms. One way that God uses our storms for good is that we have the compassion and ability to encourage someone who is going through the same storm or a similar storm. Do you know someone who is currently facing a storm? Take time today to encourage that person. Give them a phone call or write them a hand-written letter to let them know they are not alone and that God is still working in their lives.
Read Habakkuk 1:12-17 (NLT)
O Lord my God, my Holy One, you who are eternal—
surely you do not plan to wipe us out?
O Lord, our Rock, you have sent these Babylonians to correct us,
to punish us for our many sins.
But you are pure and cannot stand the sight of evil.
Will you wink at their treachery?
Should you be silent while the wicked
swallow up people more righteous than they?
Are we only fish to be caught and killed?
Are we only sea creatures that have no leader?
Must we be strung up on their hooks
and caught in their nets while they rejoice and celebrate?
Then they will worship their nets
and burn incense in front of them.
“These nets are the gods who have made us rich!”
they will claim.
Will you let them get away with this forever?
Will they succeed forever in their heartless conquests?