Summary: This is the 1st sermon in the series "Conversations With God". When God doesn't seem to care, what do you do?
Family Worship April 18, 2010
Bel Aire Baptist Church
Series: Conversations With God [#1]
CAN YOU HEAR ME?
The other day at the pool, I met the younger sister of a new swimmer on the High School team. She said that she had driven by the house and saw me walking into the house and talking on the phone. Now I know that you are all shocked about the fact that I was talking on the phone. I have been on the phone less lately, (believe it or not) because my phone seems to cut out a lot, (especially at church).
There is nothing more frustrating than the phone cutting out and you can hear the person on the other side saying, “Hello- Can you hear me”? After a while, I just say, “Never mind- I’ll talk to them later”. As I was trying to finish a very important call the other day, I got to that point. All of a sudden, I realized that a lot of my conversations with God have been that way lately also. It seems as if my conversations are very broken up or that God isn’t even listening to me at all.
As I sat and prayed about starting a new sermon series and this sermon; I literally began to beg God to just give me a sermon. It wasn’t happening and a friend called while I was sitting there angrily and said, “Hi Shawn, what are you doing”? My reply was, “I’m sitting here trying to get God to let me know the plan and for some reason He isn’t listening. In fact, it seems like in every area of my life right now that I try to talk to God about that He isn’t listening.” My friend said, “Well the last time that happened to me, I just went for a long drive in the car and told God off; told Him how mad I was; and cried a lot.” My question was simply, “Did it work?”- And my friend said, “Yes”.
I got off of the phone and began to tell God what I thought. In fact, I got so emotional about it that I kicked the table and when I did, my Message Bible that had been sitting on the table went flying off the table and it landed face down opened up. As I picked up my Bible, it was opened up to Habakkuk 1, so I thought, “I might as well read this chapter and be reminded of what it says”.
Habakkuk 1:1-4 (MSG)
“The problem as God gave Habakkuk to see it: GOD, how long do I have to cry out for help before you listen? How many times do I have to yell, "Help! Murder! Police!" before you come to the rescue? Why do you force me to look at evil, stare trouble in the face day after day? Anarchy and violence break out, quarrels and fights all over the place. Law and order fall to pieces. Justice is a joke. The wicked have the righteous hamstrung and stand justice on its head.”
Wow, it’s almost like God changed my name to Habakkuk and wrote my prayer in the Bible. All of a sudden it hit me- God wants me to preach out of the Book of Habakkuk about having conversations with Him. Although I have studied this Book of the Bible; I began to research Habakkuk and I found that there is very little known about him. Scholars aren’t even sure about the meaning of his name. They think his name means “to embrace”; but they aren’t positive. One thing I know for sure is that Habakkuk had been having private conversations with God and He told him to write it down.
Habakkuk 2:2 (MSG)
“And then GOD answered: "Write this. Write what you see. Write it out in big block letters so that it can be read on the run.”
I don’t know about you, but I really wouldn’t want to write down my private conversations with God for everyone to read- Especially not in “big block letters so that it can be read on the run.” I do have to tell you though- Praise God that Habakkuk wrote it down because it is a reminder to me of the practicality of the Bible. It is the Living Word of God that is useful to me even after thousands of years since it was written.
I love how this Book starts out. “The problem as God gave Habakkuk to see it.” Isn’t funny that the focus here is on how Habakkuk saw the problem and not God? We definitely see things differently than God does and there is where the challenges come. I believe this morning we could change that phrase to, “The problem as God gave (Insert your name) to see it”.