From Lynda Lindsey
See, he is puffed up; his desires are not upright—-but the righteous will live by his faith—- Habakkuk 2:4
For the earth will be filled with the knowledge of the glory of the Lord, as the waters cover the sea. —- But the Lord is in His holy temple; let all the earth be silent before Him. Habakkuk 2:14; 20
Yet I will rejoice in the Lord, I will be joyful in God my Savior. The Sovereign Lord is my strength; He makes my feet like the feet of a deer, He enables me to go on the heights. Habakkuk 3:18-19
Habakkuk asks God the hard questions we contemplate but usually don’t voice. How long will violence, injustice, evil, wrongdoing go on without Your intervention, God? The righteous are hemmed in by the wicked; justice is perverted, wrong prevails, the law is paralyzed; where are You, God? Why don’t You act? You, God, whose eyes are too pure to look on evil, You who cannot tolerate wrong, why don’t You intervene? Violent, greedy, arrogant people are exploiting the poor, piling up riches by extortion and thievery, plundering and raping the earth and it’s peoples, leaving devastation, bloodshed and orphans in their wake...and You allow it?
Habakkuk cries out to God, just as we do, appalled that depravity seems to have the upper hand. Then, like a watchman stationed on a high overlook, Habakkuk watches and waits for God’s answer. God’s response? Woe to those who build realms by unjust gain, shedding innocent blood; woe to those who cry out to lifeless idols for guidance, who trust in their own power. God, the righteous judge, is coming in terrifying splendor, bringing discipline, setting wrongs right. Although God lingers, wait for Him. Live in faith. Wait in faith. Keep on being faithful. Live in quiet certitude, expectantly, hopefully, joyfully, trusting that God, although He may seem slow, will come with justice in hand. The earth, at the Lord’s coming, will be filled with the knowledge of His glory, as the waters cover the sea!
Living by faith necessitates periods of contemplative silence, times to meditate on God, His words, ways, and deeds, lest fear overwhelm and paralyze us. Reflection gives perspective; we see God’s past intervention and gain courage to continue in righteousness. Courage, as essential in our faith-walk as the air we breath, is gained from God, our strength. He enables us to walk surefooted on the heights, like nimble deer gracefully ascending a mountainside. God is our joy, and grants us joy; even if tribulation withers the fruit on the trees, God is still worthy of praise. Jesus Christ, our strength, Redeemer and Savior, is coming again with justice in hand. Praise God from whom all blessings flow; dance with the deer on the mountain top, sure footed and nimble!