Christianity · encouragement · faith · God · life · religion · spiritual strength

Tough times can lead us to high places

No matter how well things go in one’s life, there is always the possibility of something unpredictable occurring that threatens one’s life, livelihood, or peace of mind.  If we were to look around and take stock of the familiar things and familiar people that are present in our lives, the things and people who give us comfort in some way, we cannot be guaranteed they will always be there.  Whether it’s our nice home, reliable vehicle, decent job, good health, our family and friends, life can at times throw a big monkey wrench in our existence to disrupt or destroy what is familiar to us.  Have you ever asked yourself how you would react if such a tragedy were to happen to you?

The prophet Habakkuk was assigned by God to tell Israel of their future judgment for their wickedness. His prophecies were also a parallel prophetic word for the end times. He knew there was a possibility he could lose all his earthly possessions–especially the agricultural abundance that was necessary for him to make a living and survive.  If he were to lose all of his crops and livestock, Habakkuk was aware his situation could be worse if he did not have Jehovah in his life. Those concerns were used by him to write a song in Habakkuk 3, which ends with these verses:

[17] Although the fig tree shall not blossom, neither shall fruit be in the vines; the labour of the olive shall fail, and the fields shall yield no meat; the flock shall be cut off from the fold, and there shall be no herd in the stalls:
[18] Yet I will rejoice in the LORD, I will joy in the God of my salvation.
[19] The LORD God is my strength, and he will make my feet like hinds’ feet, and he will make me to walk upon mine high places. To the chief singer on my stringed instruments.

In these verses, Habakkuk showed he was well-versed in God’s word. Verses 18-19 here were quoted directly from David in Psalm 18:32-33. This shows that in trying times, it pays to know God’s word. It gave Habakkuk the resolve that no matter how bad things got, he would rejoice in the Lord, letting nothing extinguish his joy in the God of his salvation.

In tough times, he would have to rely on God’s strength, not man’s, since God is the most powerful being in the universe. Only Jehovah could make his feet like hinds’ feet. The hind, a small mountain deer known today as the roe deer, has the uncanny ability to move swiftly through rocky places with poise and grace without the smallest hint of stumbling, even when running from its enemies.

This refers to the ability of believers through Christ to swiftly discern, readily accept, and adamantly pursue God’s path even in the midst of challenges. In desperate times when we do just that, we will eventually be able to look back and see just how God exalted us and spiritually elevated us above the fray to a place of safety with the ultimate goal of ruling and reigning with Christ in the future. Rejoicing in the Lord brings about the realization that “the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us,” (Romans 8:18).

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