A piece of my heart

Manila Bulletin - - Editorial -

READ: HABAKKUK 1:12–2:12 If it seems slow in com­ing, wait pa­tiently. For it will surely take place. It will not be de­layed (Habakkuk 2:3).

SENSE­LESS vi­o­lence and dark in­jus­tice can make for a steady rain in life — damp­en­ing spir­its in mists of gray. In the sum­mer of 2013, a 17 year old from a rough neigh­bor­hood jumped in front of his mother to pro­tect her from an at­tack. The bul­let struck and killed him, leav­ing his mother clutch­ing his life­less body in front of their home. The boy’s brother, who wit­nessed the crime, said later, “I lost a big piece of my heart that night.”

Habakkuk too was los­ing heart — bit by bit, piece by piece. All around him, he wit­nessed vi­o­lence and in­jus­tice. The na­tion of Ju­dah was strug­gling with the pa­gan na­tion of Assyria press­ing down on them; and the ef­fects of sin ate away at their spir­its. The prophet called out to God, “O Lord my God, my Holy One, you who are eter­nal — surely you do not plan to wipe us out?” (Habakkuk 1:12). Habakkuk ac­knowl­edged God, His holy ways, and the eter­nal hope he needed in his bit­ter, tem­po­ral cir­cum­stances.

As the prophet called out to God, he called Him “our Rock” (Habakkuk 1:12). That speaks of God’s sovereign power and con­stant faith­ful­ness. The prophet was strug­gling with the sin, vi­o­lence, and in­jus­tice of his day, but he knew he could call on the One who would lis­ten and — one day — make things right. And God didn’t dis­ap­point. He told Habakkuk that even though Ju­dah’s en­e­mies would thrive for a time and even con­quer them, His judg­ment and pun­ish­ment would “surely take place” (Habakkuk 2:3).

When you and I are over­whelmed by the harsh and un­just things we wit­ness and ex­pe­ri­ence in life, may we choose to be like Habakkuk — call­ing out to God and wait­ing ex­pec­tantly for Him to an­swer (Habakkuk 2:1). “Surely” He will an­swer and make all things right one day (Habakkuk 2:3).

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