O Lord, how long shall I cry for help, and you will not hear? Or cry to you “Violence!” and you will not save? Habakkuk 1:2
How good are you at waiting? Habakkuk has been waiting. Things look overwhelmingly dark. It is because they are. The chosen people have not lived up to their calling. The leaders have not led them well. The Northern Kingdom has been dispersed following judgment and the Southern Kingdom has not learned from their example. Judah has had some good kings, but most of them were wicked. The good ones allowed for people to see what could happen when righteousness was embraced and would bring hope to people that it could be good again. But it would also cause the righteous to long for evil to be judged. In the midst of lament comes the waiting. Habakkuk would wait for the Lord, even as he cried out to know how long he would need to wait. God’s plan will not be thwarted. Habakkuk knew that. Lament begins with a trust in God. It is that trust that allows us to wait. But waiting is not easy. For us, time passes slowly. We see the pain of the moment and may struggle with seeing how God’s eternal plan to make all things right can possibly be unfolding. Habakkuk helps us see that we start with the Lord, express our lament, and then wait for the response—confident in the sovereignty of almighty God.