Whatever State (Part I)

god, why“…for I have learned whatever state I am, to be content.” (The Apostle Paul)

In the late 7th century B.C. the prophet Habakkuk had a dilemma. His dilemma was God. The prophet wanted justice done in the land of Judah. The nation had fallen hard and fast after King Josiah had died in battle. Habakkuk pleaded, “O Lord, how long shall I cry, and You will not hear… why do You show me iniquity, and cause me to see trouble?” (1: 2-3)

And what was God’s reply to the desperate prophet? “I am raising up the Chaldeans…” (1:6) That is akin to saying the most evil beings in this wicked world would arrive soon to judge the Lord’s people. Huh? That was pretty much Habakkuk’s rejoinder. I think most of us would have that same reaction.

The Lord God then reminds the struggling prophet that He uses time and all things to accomplish His perfect purpose and plan. “The just shall live by his faith” the Lord exhorts Habakkuk and each one of us. (2:4) We are to be patient, strong and faithful, and trust God and His sovereign ways.

Habakkuk responds to the Lord his God as we should – with prayer. (Chap. 3:1-16) Then concludes his message with this wonderful hymn of faith: “Though the fig tree may not blossom, nor fruit be on the vines; Though the labor of the olive may fail, and the fields yield no food; Though the flock may be cut off from the fold, and there be no herd in the stalls – yet I will rejoice in the Lord, I will joy in the God of my salvation. The Lord God is my strength; He will make my feet like deer’s feet, and He will make me walk on my high hills.” (3:17-19)

The prophet learned whatever state he found himself in – to be content. Have we?

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