Facing Fear - With Fear
March 19, 2003 • By Ed Wrather
A prayer of Habakkuk the prophet, on Shigionoth. O LORD, I have heard Your speech and was afraid; O LORD, revive Your work in the midst of the years! - Habakkuk 3:1-2a.
When I heard, my body trembled; my lips quivered at the voice; rottenness entered my bones; and I trembled in myself, that I might rest in the day of trouble. When he comes up to the people, He will invade them with his troops. - Habakkuk 3:16.
How would you react, if you were a believer living in a country that would soon be attacked by a powerful force, knowing there would be no escape? Habakkuk responded with fear when he understood the Lord’s message, because the force attacking Judah to deliver God’s judgment, would be the Chaldeans. It was difficult for Habakkuk to understand why God would use the Chaldeans, because they were a wicked, and cruel people. Habakkuk’s fear was understandable in such a circumstance.
Habakkuk pleaded with God to “remember mercy (Habakkuk 3:2b).” He then reminds himself, and God, of the mighty acts of rescue that God has performed in the past for His people (Habakkuk 3). God is the mighty Deliverer. In chapter 2 Habakkuk states what holds him together through his fear, “Behold the proud, his soul is not upright in him; but the just shall live by his faith (Habakkuk 2:4).” Yes, Habakkuk is fearful of what the Chaldeans will do to Judah, but his fear, his respect, his reverence; his faith in his God, is much greater.
What are we to do, when faced with fearful, alarming circumstances? We should first remind ourselves of Whom really has the ultimate power. The One, with the ultimate power and capability, is not a physical enemy that we may face on this earth. The One, with the ultimate power and capability, is God Himself. To God alone, will someday every knee bow, and tongue confess (Philippians 2:10-11). Our faith in the One, with the ultimate power, gives us strength to move forward through whatever may come our way. Habakkuk is just one of countless millions who can testify to this spiritual fact.
What fear, what danger, and what threat are you facing? Is it greater than your God? Strengthen yourself in the Lord your God. Live by your faith in the One, who is greater than all others. Your reverence for Him, will empower you to face whatever you may encounter in life.