Did you ever get the feeling that life is spinning out of control? All you have to do is watch the news – it’s filled with reports of wars, floods, earthquakes, hurricanes, and terrorists threats. It appears that our world is out of control. The same thing is often true in our personal lives. On almost a daily basis we deal with sickness, death, aging, divorce, joblessness, and a multitude of other anxiety producing issues. It’s enough to make you wonder if there is anyone in charge. The question for the Christian is what should our response be when life doesn’t make sense? How should we react to life when it’s out of control?
The Old Testament prophet Habakkuk gives us the answer. Habakkuk lived in an era when Israel had turned from God. The worship of pagan idols was the norm, violence was prevalent, sin permeated every level of society and justice was available to the highest bidder. Listen as the prophet cries out to God: O Lord, how long will I cry and You will not hear? Even cry out to You, “Violence!” and You will not save (Habakkuk 1:2). Apparently the prophet had been complaining to God about the sin in Israel for some time but God had been silent. Then God spoke and revealed His plan to the prophet to bring judgment on Israel by using the Babylonians as His instrument of justice. That put the prophet in a dilemma. He wanted God to do something to stop the sin in Israel, but he hadn’t counted on this! The Babylonians were known for their cruelty and harsh treatment of the nations they conquered. Talk about the world spinning out of control! Israel was about to have their world turned totally upside down. How should the prophet respond to the prospect of doom and destruction?
There is one short verse in the book of Habakkuk that holds the answer, not only for the uncertainty that the prophet faced but for anyone today who is holding on to life by a thread. It’s found in Habakkuk 2:4 – But the just shall live by faith (or by their faithfulness). This was the core of God’s message to Habakkuk; followers of God are to live in faithfulness to God, no matter what life brings. Not only are we saved by faith but we are to continue living by faith. Faith is not just about being saved, it is about living life. It is to be a way of life for the Christian. You won’t always know why certain things happen in life but you can be faithful in how you live. You can’t always control the circumstances of life but you can control your response. All God wants from us is to be faithful to Him no matter what life brings.
If your world seems to be spinning out of control; if your life is filled with anxiety and stress, God simply wants you to remain faithful to Him. You’ll be tempted to question God’s wisdom, to become angry at His decisions, or even to decide that you can do a better job of running your life than He does. Just remain faithful. Let God be God in your life. He has a plan. He knows best. Live by faith and be faithful.
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