2013... For many it's a welcomed change! 2012 was difficult... I think many started off in expectation and hope and then life came at us fast and furious and for some - knocked us off center... sent us reeling a bit, stumbling around dazed and feeling in the dark. If you, like me, are among those - we are ready for change! Ready for New... waiting to Hope to arise once again!
2012 was a tough year, both personally and nationally. There were blessings and good time mixed in too of course, but it definitely held within it several hard eucharisteo's... going through Heartbreak and Doubt... What If's and If Only's... the Death and Letting go of Dreams and Plans laid out so very long ago... Unanswered Questions and Bends in the Road unforeseen along the way.
I ask the Lord every year, on this - the first day of a New Year, for a prophetic word or phrase as well as a book in the Bible that will be significant in the year to come.
The Phrase: Faith FILLED Patience
(I know, right? I so wanted it to be different, too!)
The Book: Habakkuk
"But (the time is coming when) the earth shall be
filled with the knowledge of the glory of the Lord
as the waters cover the sea."
Habakkuk is a minor Old Testament Prophet. His name means Embracer; his name means A Hug... and he is unique in that most prophets are God's voice to the people. but Habakkuk is the people's voice to God. He - in all realness - questions God with, "Why" and "How long?" Oh my... have we not all stood right there with him? Gods' answer to the Embracer is still the same to us today... in HIS time things will work out... and in the meantime, the just shall live by faith! (Remember, Faith FILLED Patience this year!)
The Apostle Paul quoted Habakkuk several times and it was Paul's writings that referred to Habakkuk's that captured and inspired Martin Luther and helped to bring about the Reformation! It's to Habakkuk that God said to write the vision clear, so that he who reads it may run with it! He assures him that it will surely come to pass! I have been feeling a coming Reformation for along time now and so this connection excites me and stirs up Anticipation!
"...His glory covered the heavens and the earth was full of His praise.
And His brightness was like the sunlight; rays streamed from His hand,
and there (in sunlike splendor) was the hiding place of His power."
~ Habakkuk 3:3,4
With so many things fighting for our attention... our focus... (our fear)... from the Fiscal Cliff to healthcare to the cultural/moral/political state of our world... to relational issues, spiritual issues, injustice and corruption - it will serve us well to remember that we WILL survive... that the just shall live by faith. In fact, Paul quotes it three times, and emphasizes three different words.
"The JUST shall live by faith..." (Romans 1:17)
"The just shall LIVE by faith..." (Hebrews 10:38)
The just shall live by FAITH..." (Galatians 3:11)
I fully believe that we will live by faith THROUGH the hard times that are sure to come... keep the faith... thank Him and worship Him all the way through... 2013 holds MANY blessings, but I believe some will only be seen while clinging on tight to His promises, with faith-filled patience! God in all His infinite wisdom and grace, is pretty consistently right on time... even when, to us, it feels like He is so very slow in coming!
So rest assured - no matter what things may LOOK like, God is here... He is GOOD... and He is at work. When our eyes fall down to our circumstances, hear Him calling you to lift your vision higher... look UP... remember from where your help comes from! When things look dark... because... well - this is real life here... remember that He is the Light and when we count on ...listing all the gifts He gives us - even in darkness and brokenness, we are faith filled in patience... knowing that no matter our circumstances, He is good!
In my reading up on Habakkuk, I stumbled up on this quote by Sidlow Baxter in a Commentary that just may sum up our call for 2013. In reference to Hab 3:18, he writes:
"The literal is "I will jump for joy in the Lord;
I will spin around for delight in God."
Here is the hilarity of faith!
- joy at its best
with circumstances at their worst!
What a victory!
May it be ours!"
(~Sidlow Baxter, Explore the Book, p. 212)
Yes, Lord.. let is be so!
P.S. To read about my OneWord365, click HERE and join the movement away from Resolutions, and into a changed life!