When I sang lead for the Gospel Quartet ‘Livin’ Harmony’, we worked hard rehearsing the song entitled ‘Turn Your Radio On’. The wording was tricky, the melody repetitive. I had a hard time memorizing the lyrics. The Quartet was very patient with me for I had the least experience of anyone. And I had the lead part which should be the pronounced sound. Periodically, I would get stuck on some musical notes that would not conform to what was written! To be honest, I get stuck in more places than musical notes and lyrics!
I get mired in negative thinking. Feeling guilty much of the time. Never doing enough or having purer motives. Very high expectations for myself. Can you identify? When reading the book of Habakkuk, I was impressed with the emphasis on living by faith. Sounds typical: sermons laced with ‘pious platitudes’. Like saying ‘just live by faith and all will be well.’ Or ‘you don’t have enough faith and maybe that’s why…’.
Not exactly what I read here in Habakkuk 2 and 3. Not at all. God tells the prophet that times are tough, and they’ll get worse before they get worse. So, the only way to live in this sinful world is through eyes and mind focused on the Lord, who loves us and who will work all things together for good( Romans 8:28). In other words, by faith. Yes–by FAITH.
Stop the negative thinking. Get out of reverse, slide into neutral and then shift into forward gears. Let go of the emergency break and engage the clutch to get going…for Him. For even when the worst times come, when our worst nightmares hit us in the face, that’s when we move into faith-gear. Reminding ourselves of God’s goodness, salvation freely given, His promises fulfilled… in His time, in His way. Clutching and shifting, putting pressure on the gas peddle, moving forward and getting somewhere.
Habakkuk 3:16 is amazing. Let the words sink in. Soak in them. A bubble bath of faith that cleanses the dirtiest of life’s dramas! Look at what Habakkuk is facing– no figs…no grapes or wine…no crops for food… no cattle or sheep or milk…’yet I will rejoice in the Lord; I will take joy in the God of my salvation.’ Is that not living by faith? Hang on for dear life. Hang on to the Lord. No matter what, let’s trust Jesus. No matter what. Turn your faith on!
Prayer: Lord, strengthen our faith. Give us trust that never rusts. Belief that never leaves us. In Jesus’ name. Amen.