Week 43 Friday

Be Utterly Amazed

Today’s scripture selection: Habakkuk

Key verses: Habakkuk 1:5

The Old Testament book called Habakkuk is unusual.

It’s about a prophet by that name.  But, instead of there being a lot of prophetic saying in the book, there is more of a dialogue; a question/answer session.  And who has that dialogue? The dialogue takes places between Habakkuk and God.

It begins with the prophet’s question to God: “How long, Lord, must I call for help, but you do not listen?”

Have you ever asked God such a question?  I know that I have.

It’s interesting how God answers.

He answers, at least at first, by saying something that probably confused Habakkuk even more:

“Look at the nations and watch – and be utterly amazed.  For I am going to do something in your days that you would not believe, even if you were told.”

Again…ever been in that position?  I know that I have.

Sometimes God is at work in our lives in powerful, confusing, perhaps even frightening ways.  But, after it has happened, we can look back and it all makes sense.

In Habakkuk’s day that had to do with using a powerful nation in an unexpected way.

In our day – who knows what God has in mind?

But of one thing we can be sure.  God will work out His purposes in the right way; at the right time; for the right reasons.

It may not always make sense to us.  It may not seem like the answer to prayer.  But somehow, it will be right.  And only later will we understand.  Only later will we be “utterly amazed.”

Prayer: Lord, in the times when your action – or seeming lack of it – confuses me; give me faith to follow in trust.  AMEN.



By Paul Simrell

The Reverend Paul W. Simrell has served for over thirty years in a variety of congregational and institutional settings. He is a recognized minister with standing in the Virginia region of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) in the United States and Canada and is nationally endorsed by the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) for specialized ministry in both pastoral counseling and chaplaincy. Ordained in 1982, he has served congregations in Kentucky, Texas, Florida, and Virginia. He currently serves as the pastor of Elpis Christian Church, a small, historic congregation located just a few miles west of Richmond, Virginia. Elpis is the Greek word meaning “expectant hope.” He also serves on the associate clinical staff of the Virginia Institute of Pastoral Care, Richmond, Virginia, both as a pastoral counselor and a ministerial assessment specialist, specializing in executive, clergy and relationship coaching. He is a graduate of the University of Florida and Lexington Theological Seminary and has done advanced clinical training in chaplaincy and pastoral counseling at the University of Kentucky Medical Center in Lexington, Kentucky, Children’s Medical Center and Parkland Hospital in Dallas, Texas and the Virginia Institute of Pastoral Care in Richmond, Virginia. He is a Certified Pastoral Counselor, an ACPE Practitioner, and a member of the American Association of Christian Counselors. He is a Certified Facilitator of the Prepare-Enrich relationship assessment and skills-building program and served as a volunteer chaplain for over twenty years with the CJW Medical Center campuses in Richmond, Virginia. His avocational interests include playing the piano and drawing. He is very happily married to his wife Elizabeth Yeamans Simrell, a free-lance writer, who is also a Certified Facilitator for the Prepare-Enrich program. Good company in a journey makes the way seem shorter. — Izaak Walton

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