100 Days of Trust
Lucinda Secrest McDowell
The news tonight was horrific. And frightening. Seemingly hopeless.
And the news last night was the same.
In the first 100 days of this new year there were times I was tempted to feel a bit like the Old Testament prophet, Habakkuk, who cried out to God as the Babylonians were overtaking Israel:
- “Violence is everywhere!
- Must I forever see these evil deeds?
- Why must I watch all this misery?
- Wherever I look, I see destruction and violence.
- I am surrounded by people who love to argue and fight.
- The law has become paralyzed and there is no justice in the courts.
- The wicked far outnumber the righteous…” (Habakkuk 1.2-4)
What in the world was happening to them (and why does it sound so much like today?)
“The crisis internationally was serious. But of even greater concern was the national corruption. No wonder Habakkuk looked at all the corruption and asked, ‘Why doesn’t God do something? Godly men and women continue to ask similar ‘whys’ in a world of increasing international crises and corruption. Nation rises up against nation and sin abounds at home.”(J. Ron Blue)
What can we do at such times?
Habakkuk chose to trust: “Even though the fig trees have no blossoms,
and there are no grapes on the vines; even though the olive crop fails,
and the fields lie empty and barren; even though the flocks die in the fields,
and the cattle barns are empty, yet I will rejoice in the Lord!
I will be joyful in the God of my salvation!” Habakkuk 3.18 NLT
He knew how important it was to take the long view, to realize that God is sovereign. To know that God’s timing is perfect.
Even if we, too, say, “How long, O Lord, must I call for help?” (Habakkuk 1.2) Can we handle slow?
“Above all, trust in the slow work of God. We are quite naturally impatient in everything to reach the end without delay. We should like to skip the intermediate stages. We are impatient of being on the way to something unknown, something new. And yet it is the law of all progress that it is made by passing through some stages of instability – and that it may take a very long time… Give our Lord the benefit of believing that his hand is leading you.” (Pierre Teilhard De Chardin)
Habakkuk looked around and all he saw was emptiness – no fruit, no animals, no wheat. But he knew God.
And so he chose to trust, praying, “I have heard all about you, Lord. I am filled with awe by your amazing works. In this time of our deep need, help us again as you did in years gone by. And in your anger, remember your mercy.” (Habakkuk 3.2)
At first I thought that I would just fast from the evening news. But, alas, curiosity and concern caused me to realize that I have to live in reality. For one thing, news headlines make a prayer list all by themselves. For another, I am called to shine my light – however tiny – into the darkness.
As I make my own list of ‘though…yet’ I shall trust in the slow work of God. Will you join me?
under the mercy, Cindy
©2017 Lucinda Secrest McDowell
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