Habakkuk 3:1a – A prayer of Habakkuk the prophet. (AMP)
We've worked our way through boring, impersonal, trivial, and accepting prayers, and wonder how much worse our prayer life can get. Our prayer life slackens. Where are we going wrong?
Habakkuk's prayer may revitalize ours. He demands God make Himself known (3:2). He reminds himself about God's greatness (3:3-7). He questions God's actions (3:8), and even praises chastisements and calamities (3:9-11)! He recalls answered prayers (3:12-15). He makes no requests, but states his reaction to all that God is. "I heard and my [whole inner self] trembled; my lips quivered at the sound. Rottenness enters my bones and under me [down to my feet]; I tremble." (Habakkuk 3:16a AMP) Whew!
Do we really understand how great God is? Do we trust Him when things look hopeless? Habakkuk did. He says, "I will wait quietly for the day of trouble and distress when there shall come up against [my] people him who is about to invade and oppress them." (Habakkuk 3:16b AMP) Imagine that!
His closing words list what could go wrong, but contain nary a hint of whining or complaining. He states facts and declares where he stands in the midst of them (3:17-19). Then? He sets the entire prayer to "wild, enthusiastic, and triumphal music" (3:1b)!
What if we prayed this way and then made both list and declaration? Lists will differ, but the standing and the music should be exactly the same.
Prayer: Lord, we rejoice in You. You are our strength, personal bravery, and invincible army (3:19). You help us make spiritual progress in times of trouble, suffering, and responsibility. We will not stand still in terror. Amen!