Thursday is for Preaching
I am preaching from Habakkuk this month. (or I was when I first posted this!)
It is a sobering book.
The last time I preached from the book was in early 2012 when I was doing an overview of each book of the Bible. The time before that was when I preached a series from the book in 1993. New Song Church in Bolingbrook was just shy of its second birthday. I am now studying it all over again and coming at it with fresh eyes.
Relevant? It is like it was written for our time. Two thousand six hundred years ago, God inspired Habakkuk to pen these 56 verses for the tribe of Judah and they sound just as relevant today.
Habakkuk’s problem is that …
the people he loves
in the nation he loves,
under the watchful eye of the God he loves,
he looks around and sees that
. his people are choosing wickedness over righteousness, (1:ff)
. and his nation is being corrupted, (1:2-3)
. and justice is being perverted (1:4)
. and the God he loves doesn’t seem to notice (1:2, 3)
. and doesn’t seem to be doing anything about it. (1:2, 3)
So Habakkuk does what a godly and confused man does in a situation he doesn’t understand and over which he is grieved. He cries out to God.
His little book is a passionate cry to God from the depths of confusion and despair. He doesn’t understand what God is doing.
I don’t have Habakkuk’s problem though and that is the problem.
And the Church in America doesn’t have Habakkuk’s problem either. And that’s precisely the problem. We live in the same situation in our country, in our time and yet …
we aren’t doing what Habakkuk did.
A couple of weeks ago while I was working on the background prep for preaching Habakkuk (Coming January-March), I came across Psalm 119:136. The Psalmist wrote:
“My eyes shed streams of tears,
… because people do not keep your law.” (Psalm 119:136)
Here’s what I wrote in my journal that day:
“Is this not what is missing in our time? ‘Oh God, where is the lament of your people over the rebellion in our land? Where is mine?'”
The question haunted me all day.
Later that day (Dec. 17), I tweeted out the following,
“Where is the Habakkuk of our generation? Where are the cries of lament from the people of God?”
I’m still haunted. Today I retweeted that post. I’m still looking for an answer. I’m hoping I can become a Habakkuk. I’m hoping that I might bring some people along with me.
If you want to join me, download Jim Elliff’s “Five Resolves for Personal Revival.” It’s a start.