God

Shake your fist at God

Have you ever been so angry at God you wanted to shake your fist in his face?

Why don’t you? Go ahead. Some folks think God might get upset if you did something so disrespectful. Do you think God might say something like, “Gee, I didn’t know you felt that way.”

No, he won’t. God doesn’t mind if you contend with him if you get upset, even if you’re livid and red-faced angry.

“We prayed for you to to cure my wife of breast cancer but she died.”

“I was supposed to get a promotion but I got fired instead.”

“I got diagnosed with ALS.”

“I thought our finances were doing okay. Now it looks like we have to declare bankruptcy.”

He knew the words you were going to use, even the words that took God’s name in vain.

God was not surprised that you got so angry.

There’s a guy in the Bible who got over-the-top angry at God. The prophet Habakkuk, got plenty mad at God. Read his misery,

The prophecy that Habakkuk the prophet received.

How long, Lord, must I call for help,
    but you do not listen?
Or cry out to you, “Violence!”
    but you do not save?
Why do you make me look at injustice?
    Why do you tolerate wrongdoing?
Destruction and violence are before me;
    there is strife, and conflict abounds.
Therefore the law is paralyzed,
    and justice never prevails.
The wicked hem in the righteous,
    so that justice is perverted.

He contends with God and let God know what makes him so angry.

He and God exchange words. Then in Habakkuk 3 the prophet lays out the worst case scenario:

17 Though the fig tree does not bud
    and there are no grapes on the vines,
though the olive crop fails
    and the fields produce no food,
though there are no sheep in the pen
    and no cattle in the stalls,
18 yet I will rejoice in the Lord,
    I will be joyful in God my Savior.

19 The Sovereign Lord is my strength;
    he makes my feet like the feet of a deer,
    he enables me to tread on the heights.

If the entire economy of the people is destroyed, if there is nothing left. If all is gone and there are no resources. If the shelves at Walmart are bare, if Amazon’s website gets sabotaged, if nothing’s left, then read what Habakkuk does . . .

 yet I will rejoice in the Lord,
    I will be joyful in God my Savior

he Sovereign Lord is my strength;
    he makes my feet like the feet of a deer,
    he enables me to tread on the heights.

Habakkuk will rejoice, praise the Lord. He will surrender his will to his Sovereign Lord.

For many of us our circumstances may be as dire as Habakkuk’s. No money, no work, mouths to feed with little or no food in the pantry, half-tank of gas in the car.

Would we rejoice in the Lord? Would we be joyful in the God of our salvation?

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