This sermon is part of the sermon series "Finding God in a Cold and Dark Season". See series.
I'm sure there are times when you have wondered, "What will become of me?" Were you standing, bewildered, outside of your boss's office door? Sitting in your car after the doctor's appointment? Alone after your spouse walked out? Holding a rejection letter from grad school? I remember thinking that on the night of my 40th birthday when the U.S. started Operation Desert Storm against Iraq and Saddam Hussein and declared, "The great showdown has begun! The mother of all battles is underway." We thought he might well use chemical weapons. That day an Iraqi Scud missile struck Israel and many of us wondered, "What will become of us?" What about 9/11? We live in a precarious world; not merely unpredictable, but shot through with wickedness, ruled by the ruthless, undermined by the unscrupulous. What will become of us?
As believers, those are times when we pray. But if you're like me, our prayers often seem flimsy. They don't seem to move us nearer to God or have a strong enough grip to lay hold of God's help. How do you pray when you are terrified about the future? The ancient Jewish prophet Habakkuk knew how to pray in such times.
Habakkuk lived in a terrifying time, 600 years before Christ, when by God's design Babylon was poised to utterly crush the Jews—and Habakkuk with them. Chapter three is his prayer and as well as an anthem. Here is a timeless, soul-nourishing, faith-orienting prayer for those times we all face when things seem out of control. We learn a pattern of prayer here, as well as words which will serve us as they did Habakkuk.
When you fear what will become of you, pray
Habakkuk begins his prayer remembering the stories of how God delivered Israel in the past. That's evident from what follows. ...
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Lee Eclov recently retired after 40 years of local pastoral ministry and now focuses on ministry among pastors. He is the author of Feels Like Home: Reflections on the Care of Souls and Pastoral Graces: Reflections on the Care of Souls (Moody Publishers), as well as being a frequent contributor to Preaching Today and CT Pastors. To learn more about his Pastors' Gatherings visit www.leeeclov.com.