“Lord, I have heard of your fame; I stand in all of your deeds, oh Lord. Renew them in our day, in our time make them known; in wrath remember mercy.” Habakkuk 3:2
One of my daughters was visibly distraught. When we begin to unpack the root cause of her distress we discovered she was all worked up and enormously frustrated because her classmates at school were misbehaving. As a result, the entire class received punitive measures. Her frustration was twofold: first, she was disgruntled about receiving punishment for other classmates’ poor choices. She clearly felt she was a recipient of ‘collateral damage,’ so to speak. Second, she felt utterly powerless in getting her classmates to do the right thing. I imagine that some of the righteous remnant of Israel felt a similar righteous indignation toward their neighbors.
In Hab. 3:2, four elements surface. First, he announces to Yahweh a simple fact; namely, that he had heard of Yahweh’s great fame. He had no doubt heard from older generations of what a great God and Savior he had been for Israel. Second, we see Habakkuk recall and remember the exploits Yahweh had performed on Israel’s behalf in previous generations. He knew full well that Yahweh had delivered Israel from the hands of pharaoh, and preserved his people during the time of the judges, and had established Israel as a nation. Here we reach a transition point. Habakkuk, acknowledging what God had done in the past, set his sights towards the present and the future. Third, he cries out to Yahweh to once again show his might, power, intervention, and favor to Israel. And forth, he knows that God is fully loving and hence is fully just. He therefore entreats the Lord to have mercy upon them, despite the fact they are not only candidates of receiving judgment, but recipients of it, and deservingly so.
I personally believe we the church are in a similar position as in America today. There is much for which God’s righteous judgment could and should be upon us, but I find myself joining in Habakkuk’s cry, that the Lord will have mercy on us, that he would pour out his miraculous exploits upon this land once again, and that revival would unfurl in our midst. It has happened before, it can happen again. God is Good and He does not forsake His own. May we take some time today to cry out to God on behalf of our nation that God would bring renewal, revival, and revitalization to our land.
Question for the Day:
Do I think that God can do today the same kind of exploits he has done in previous generations?