"Trusting God Cont."
1. What is the overarching theme of this chapter? The overarching theme was the might and power of God.
Habakkuk goes from questioning to waiting and finally to praising God. He understood that God had a plan and He was the only one that could accomplish it. As we go through life, we will encounter much of these same scenarios and it comes down to how we decide to handle it. As beings created in the image of God and with the gift of free will, we have the ability to perform a variety of different ways, but when it comes down to it, He is looking for our trust.
Sometimes God will allow a situation to get beyond our means so that when He brings us back we will know that it was Him. In that He is reaffirming His love for us and reminding us that even when it looks like we are on the path alone, God has not, nor will He ever forsake us.
2. What is the significance of “selah” and how should we respond to it?
Selah is one of those words in the Bible that has provoked thought from many scholars. The fact is that it is impossible to know what the full-on meaning of the word is since it has no direct translation known. With that in mind there has been a full examination of the context in which it has been used in order to better understand its true meaning. So focusing on the contexts in which it has been used, it is widely believed to me the same as a musical term, “to hang.”
To think about it like that is to use it as a rest; a pause in what is being stated. This is a reflective moment, soak in what you have just read and really pay attention to the words. Something important is being stated in this moment of praise and the author wanted to ensure that there was time to soak it in.
3. Thinking back to the overarching theme: What is Habakkuk trying to communicate to the reader?
Habakkuk is in his own way trying to impress on the reader the importance of understanding who God truly is. To understand God in His infinite wisdom, power and love, is to know whom you can place all of your trust in. It is easy to question what God is doing and hard to trust that He knows exactly what He is doing. As mortal beings, we do not have the infinite sight into the past, present and future, because of that we often shy away from trusting that God has it in control. It is normal to question and be anxious, that is where faith steps in. In the end Habakkuk concludes in the best way possible:
18 yet I will triumph in Yahweh;
I will rejoice in the God of my salvation!
19 Yahweh my Lord is my strength;
He makes my feet like those of a deer
and enables me to walk on mountain heights!
This display of surrender and faith is what it is all about. Habakkuk shows full-on the might and power of God and why we can trust Him in all areas of our life.
4. How do we take this into our present world and apply it to our daily lives?
The easy answer is to just trust God more. That is much easier said than done in a lot of cases. The fact is that as we begin to experience hardship we often lean on ourselves first and then we look out from there. When we realize that we cannot do it ourselves, we often default to panic instead of peace in God. Having faith in God is not for believing in Him, but rather for knowing He will sustain you and never forsake you.
So now back to the question. When you go into the world around, remember that some things are just out of your control and that is what God is here for. Nothing escapes Him and everything will answer to Him. Try to remember Proverbs 3:5:
Trust in the LORD with all your heart, and do not rely on your own understanding;
There are a couple things I want to challenge you with in this chapter. First, give it a try, read Habakkuk 3 again and pause to think about what you are reading. Think about the implications of what Habakkuk is saying to us about God and His nature.
Second, we need to try to think of ways each day to tangibly exercise our trust in God. When we lean on Him for little things in our lives, it makes it much easier to lean on Him when something big comes in. Think about James 4:8:
Draw near to God, and He will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, sinners, and purify your hearts, double-minded people!
Take some time to lean on God and seek Him in His word. Go to Him and He will come to you. God is not forceful and He will not make you let Him help you. It has to be your decision to trust God and release your will to His. In doing that you will find yourself with more internal peace and comfort. We cannot let the cares of this present world consume our thoughts and keep us away from God’s peace of mind.
If we let our minds wonder then they control us. Keep your thoughts in check and continuously on Christ and your actions will reflect Him.