By August 2008, I had already visited two neurologists and was waiting to see a third for a diagnosis. I was not doing well. I was too weak to hold my head up, much less drive. I had double vision and I was losing control of my fingers. I was living on Ensure (meal replacement drink) because I had trouble chewing and swallowing. Whatever disease I had, my life was drastically affected. Things looked bleak.

In today’s passage, Habakkuk is contemplating the grim future awaiting him and his people. The Babylonian invasion would devastate his nation. Figs, grapes and olives were staple foods essential for daily living. For the fields to yield no food meant that there would be no bread. Habakkuk and his people faced the real threat of economic ruin, famine, and death by starvation. And that’s if they survived the Babylonian invasion. You can understand why Habakkuk trembles at the approaching horror.

But as he trembles, he knows that God was right to bring judgment upon his nation. Even though he is hurting, he waits on God to make all things right in the end.

Faith does not mean you become immune to pain; neither does it mean you escape from pain. Faith means you submit to God’s purposes, regardless of the cost. By faith, despite the grim outlook, Habakkuk could rejoice because his joy was founded in God, his true reason to rejoice.

God had proven his commitment to his covenant people in the past. He had always been faithful, despite his people’s unworthiness. They had always been debtors to God’s mercy.

You and I can joyfully submit to God’s plans because we know God. No matter what you are facing, if you are in Christ your ultimate future is secure because it is founded on God’s faithfulness. Mercy, not judgment, will be the last word.

Habakkuk’s joy was not founded on external circumstances but on eternal realities. The Babylonian invasion might have deprived him of the necessities of life, but it could never take God away from him. His covenant relationship with God would always be there. **True faith recognizes what is real and permanent, and therefore most vital. **

In the words of John Piper, “Faith is being satisfied with all that God is for us in Jesus Christ.”

Habakkuk’s strength is founded on God’s sustaining grace, not on his limited resources. So it is for us. Let’s remember: on this side of Calvary, we see what Habakkuk saw and more. We are assured of God’s steadfast love, demonstrated by the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ, who loved us and gave himself for us.

Father, thank you because your mercy has the last word. Your promises are unchanging and your love for me is steady and sure. Help me today to fix my eyes on Jesus, to trust you through every circumstance, no matter how painful. Thank you for being with me and working through me in all things. Amen.

Throughout this Day: Like Habakkuk, choose to focus on God's character rather than any fleeting suffering.

Tags: Daily Devotional Habakkuk 3 trust God courageous faith
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