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Monday, September 29, 2014

The WHY and the WHO

1.        Genocide of Christians and other minorities in Iraq and other places around the globe
2.        ISIS- Islamic State threatening Caliphate
3.        Russia invading Ukraine
4.        Russia and China building trade relations without the US Dollar
5.        Ferguson Missouri Riots
6.        Ebola epidemic
7.        Scandals throughout the White House- IRS, VA, Benghazi, etc

Things that make you ask, "WHY!"

“God, Why do you allow such things to happen?”

I was reading in Habakkuk the other day when God answered this question.

Habakkuk begins his writing by stating he has a burden. He then proceeds to question God about WHY certain events were happening and how long must they continue before God would have mercy.

Though a prophet, Habakkuk began to have doubts about who God was and God's love for His people.

Habakkuk was in a theoretical crisis. 

God was NOT acting like Habakkuk thought He should. 

He wondered WHY God was inactive. Why He didn’t do something! 

Everything Habakkuk thought He knew about God was being challenged as Judah’s existence was threatened by the expanding of the Chaldean empire. Cruelty, corruption, and idolatry were rampant. 

And God was silent.

WHY was God allowing this to happen? How much longer must it go on? How much worse would it get?

God listened to Habakkuk’s doubts and fears. Then He graciously answered.

“For I will work a work in your days Which you would not believe, thought it were told to you.” Hab 1:5b NKJV 

God goes on to tell Habakkuk that His plan was bigger than what Habakkuk could see. Habakkuk just needed to trust Him and remember His past faithfulness. God would not remain silent forever.

There are reasons for God’s silence.

Reasons found in other parts of the Bible-such as in Jeremiah when God instructed His people to embrace the captivity. 

You see, God desires to use even the vilest of evil to draw ALL men to Him.

In Jeremiah, God used the captivity of His people to bring Salvation to the Babylonians (if they would chose to believe). 

There’s always a bigger picture than what we realize.

There are countless testimonies of people who have endured great hardships as prisoners of war who brought salvation into those dark places! 

Corrie Ten Boom
Esther Ahn Kim
Dietrich Bonhoeffer
Louis Zamperini

These are just a few off the top of my head who suffered (and some died) at the hands of cruel people and yet the Hope and Grace of God changed, not only their lives, but the lives of the very people who set out to do them harm. 

I don’t know WHY certain events are taking place today.

I don’t know WHY God is allowing such sorrows.

But like Habakkuk, I know there is a reason and that my God will sustain His people through great trials and adversity.

Our questions shouldn’t be WHY God allows this. Instead we should seek to know more about WHO this God is that will help us through the things we don’t understand. 

It’s in knowing WHO God is that we find our hope, joy, strength and endurance to go on.

“…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…” Hab 3:17b-19a NKJV

It shouldn’t matter what the circumstances are. When doubts and fears arise, we can rest secure in a dependable God. He hasn’t failed His people yet.

He just chooses to use times of theoretical crises to draw us ever closer to His side...and this can hurt.

Don’t shy away from the pain. It’s through those times that our faith is strengthened and our understanding of WHO God is becomes clearer. 

Faith untested isn’t much faith at all. 

I pray you have peace, dear friend, as you see the world around us in chaos. 

Our God is in control and His Word will not return void.

“For the earth WILL be filled with the knowledge of the glory of the Lord, as the waters cover the sea.” Hab 2:14 NKJV (emphasis mine) 

It doesn’t matter WHY it's happening, it matters WHO you trust.

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