After losing four of his daughters in a shipwreck, Horatio Spafford penned the famous words: "When peace like a river attendeth my way, when sorrows like sea billows roll, whatever my lot, Thou hast taught me to say, It is well, it is well with my soul." This kind of peace that Spafford demonstrated is the peace that only God provides. Have you ever seen someone model this kind of peace? Perhaps you currently know someone going through great loss and heartache who has this kind of peace. This peace requires great faith in God. It demonstrates confidence that God is in control throughout our storms. We all face storms in our lives. The question is: How will we respond to these storms? The prophet Habakkuk was not immune to storms in his life. As we study the book of Habakkuk, we see that he, too, experienced peace in the middle of his own storm. Throughout our study of this book, we will be encouraged to have faith, even in the middle of our storms.
If you were caught in the middle of the ocean during a powerful storm and could pick only one person to be with you, who would it be? Why?
1. What are some things in our world that take away our peace? Why do you think we face storms in our lives?
2. Read Habakkuk 1:1-4. Why do you think people blame God when they face a difficult situation?
This is the message that the prophet Habakkuk received in a vision.
How long, O Lord, must I call for help?
But you do not listen!
“Violence is everywhere!” I cry,
but you do not come to save.
Must I forever see these evil deeds?
Why must I watch all this misery?
Wherever I look,
I see destruction and violence.
I am surrounded by people
who love to argue and fight.
The law has become paralyzed,
and there is no justice in the courts.
The wicked far outnumber the righteous,
so that justice has become perverted.
3. Have you ever felt, or do you currently feel, disappointed with God? Why or why not?
4. Which of these truths is the hardest for you to understand when it comes to reasons for pain and suffering? What about that truth makes it so difficult to accept?
- We live in a broken world that we broke.
- We suffer because of our sins.
- Satan causes pain and suffering.
- God allows pain and suffering.
5. Who have you seen someone model peace in the middle of a storm? How did they have such peace? (Habakkuk 2:20)
But the Lord is in his holy Temple.
Let all the earth be silent before him.
6. Read Habakkuk 3:16-19. How did God give Habakkuk peace? How can God bring you to the point of peace in the middle of your storm?
I trembled inside when I heard this;
my lips quivered with fear.
My legs gave way beneath me,
and I shook in terror.
I will wait quietly for the coming day
when disaster will strike the people who invade us.
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.
7. Why do you follow Jesus? If the only thing Jesus ever gave you was eternal life, would that be enough for you? Why or why not?
Part of the beauty of being in community with each other is that you can face your storms together. Group leaders, give each person in your small group a 3x5 index card. Have every group member write on their card the storm they are facing right now. Next, have them pass their card to the person on their left. Close the group by having everyone in the group pray for the person on their right. Consider holding hands while doing this to remind one another that you are not alone in your storm.
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Jesus told him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one can come to the Father except through me."