Angry Mob Photo by Robert Couse-Baker on Flickr.
By Lisa Nordell-Detres
Have you ever heard a news report and slapped yourself on the forehead while asking that very question? It does not matter what your political, philosophical or religious tendencies may be, there is some group of people out there right now that makes your head spin every time they make noise. The prophet Habakkuk asked a similar question in his short book. The book starts out this way:
“The burden which the prophet Habakkuk saw.
O LORD, how long shall I cry,
And You will not hear?
Even cry out to You, “Violence!”
And You will not save.
Why do You show me iniquity,
And cause me to see trouble?
For plundering and violence are before me;
There is strife, and contention arises.
Therefore the law is powerless,
And justice never goes forth.
For the wicked surround the righteous;
Therefore perverse judgment proceeds.” (Habakkuk 1:1-4, NKJV)
The key to the diagnosis of the problem is found in the last two lines: “the wicked surround the righteous; Therefore perverse judgment proceeds.” If you ever feel like you are surrounded by evil, you are not alone. It is also important to know from reading this book that God is quite OK with His people asking these kinds of questions. God listens when His people cry out in anguish over the sin, injustice and pain in this world. He does not shy away from these seemingly tough questions, because He is still in control and has all the answers.
God answers Habakkuk in the next six verses, essentially assuring the prophet that He has a plan to deal with the evil that causes him so much angst. God always has a plan; usually we do not know what the plan is until it unfolds before us or until we look back and see that He was in control all along.
God lays out the bottom line of how our lives need to be lived in the second chapter, last line of verse 4: “But the just shall live by his faith.” We need to have the faith to know that God is powerful enough to deal with the evil in the world, and will do so in His perfect time. In the meantime, we have a job to do and carping about injustice is not that job. Teaching others about our perfect, just and loving creator God is what we are supposed to be doing until the last day, so go make a difference today!
Lisa Nordell-Detres is a mother of four, grandma to two boys with a third on the way (!), a pastor’s wife and has worked in the garment and customer service industries in southern California. Besides writing, Lisa enjoys cooking, sewing, organic gardening, hiking, skiing and doing most anything outside. Lisa is a member of the Central Oregon Writers Guild.
Lisa was born and raised in Denver, Colorado, studied Christian Apologetics at Simon Greenleaf University, holds a Bachelor’s of Science in Fashion Design from Woodbury University and an MBA from California State University at Northridge. Lisa, her husband and their youngest child now live in central Oregon.