Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Still Holding On

I have a weakness.

It is very much my Kryptonite.

I love to eavesdrop.

 Some people think it is extremely rude, but in a culture that does not seem to care, the eavesdropper stands alone and proud to say, “I care about what you have to say even if no one else does.”
I remember one evening some years back my wife and I had stopped at a McDonalds to eat together and she began to pour her heart out about something that was heavy on her mind. I truly wish I could tell you that I heard her troubles, but just a few feet behind me there was a fight about to erupt between and elderly man and a homeless man.

I saw her lips moving and her eyes moist with small tears but all I could hear was, “Are you serious you little punk? I ought to put a bullet in your head now and save the world one worthless mouth to feed!!!”
It was about to go down. A McScuffle!!!

She was crying a little now, but I just could not tune this out. Then she asked me the question that all of us have been asked at the worst times. “Well, what do you think about all of this?”
I looked her deeply in the eyes and I said, “Babe, this is just like Vegas! We get dinner and a show! Talk about a Mc Value Meal!”

What you are about to read is an eavesdropped conversation. It’s ok.

“Yet I will rejoice in the LORD, I will joy in the God of my salvation.” ~Habakkuk 3:18

The nation of Judah was dying.
She is sounding the death rattle of countless empires and orders before her the only thing separating from their category was that she was referred to as God’s chosen people. She had been called to repent and she had staunchly refused.
In the first chapter of the book of Habakkuk we are introduced to a truly extraordinary individual.

His name literally means: To Embrace
Webster’s dictionary defines Embrace this way; 1)To Clasp in the arms lovingly; hug. 2)To accept readily. 3)To take up as a profession. 4) To encircle. 5) To include; contain.

He has been chosen to speak for God to His people as they are defeated by the Babylonians.
In chapter one he asks the Lord how long what is happening is going to go on. He is asking God how He can allow the things going on to go happen.
Chapter two is God’s response to Habakkuk.

Babylon is coming and it is going to be painful for everyone. God lists out in detail just what charges He has against Judah.
Then chapter three is Habakkuk’s answer to God.
This is the wild thing about this book. We don’t get a message from what he pronounces to the people on God’s behalf. We get the message from Habakkuk pronounces to God.
“Yet I will rejoice in the LORD, I will joy in the God of my salvation.” ~Habakkuk 3:18

“Father, I understand your anger and I also understand that judgment is necessary…but I still choose to cling to you.”

Judgment is eminent, but I will still cling to you.
As a father, God has shown me more of Himself through this lens than any other in my entire life.
There are times of discipline and that discipline is eminent, but nothing touches my heart as deeply than my children reminding me that they love me even after the discipline has been administered.
Brynn, my daughter, tells me right before punishment has been carried out, "Remember I love you so much Daddy."
The way we respond to God's hand in our life can be just as toxic to us as Kryptonite was to Superman.
The way that we respond to God's purpose in our lives will determine what He can and will do through us.
As His child, Habakkuk's response is a tremendous example for you and I in our responses to the things that He allows in our lives.
Allowed circumstances in our life are:

A) To Correct.
And ye have forgotten the exhortation which speaketh unto you as unto children, My son, despise not thou the chastening of the Lord, nor faint when thou art rebuked of him: For whom the Lord loveth he chasteneth, and scourgeth every son whom he receiveth. If ye endure chastening, God dealeth with you as with sons; for what son is he whom the father chasteneth not? But if ye be without chastisement, whereof all are partakers, then are ye bastards, and not sons.” ~Hebrews 12:5-8

God corrects His kids. He is not angry with you, but He loves you to much to allow you to continue to hurt yourself with poor choices.

B) To Prune

I am the true vine, and my Father is the husbandman. Every branch in me that beareth not fruit he taketh away: and every branch that beareth fruit, he purgeth it, that it may bring forth more fruit.” ~John 15:1-2
The first fruit of the Spirit is love. If you extend true agape love to those around you, you will have people in your life that have been allowed to be there and they will take advantage of that love. You will be hurt. The pruning when responded to right will allow you to produce more fruit. Joy. Pruning of Joy comes and when responded to correctly it produces Peace, and on it goes as we mature in Christ.

C) The Law of Sowing and Reaping

“Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap. For he that soweth to his flesh shall of the flesh reap corruption; but he that soweth to the Spirit shall of the Spirit reap life everlasting.” ~Galatians 6:7-8

 We cannot sow bad seed and blame God when a bad crop grows from it. Quite honestly we find ourselves with bad times because we made poor choices. God can use those circumstances for our good, but our response is crucial.


What will your response to God’s allowed circumstances in your life be?
Habakkuk’s response speaks into the lives of those he represents, those who looked to him, and those he had never met.

Our response can have the same impact.

 Climbing with you,






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