“Weekly Words of Wisdom”

Wednesday, May 27, 2020

Dear Saints,

We are called to remain faithful while enduring this strange world of sheltering in place, social distancing (for some: complete cutoff) and gathering via computers and phones for worship and fellowship. The longer this goes on, the harder it gets for most everyone, save extreme introverts.

My idea for offering some Words of Wisdom this week was to strongly encourage you to take just 5-10 minutes and turn to scripture, where wisdom, comfort and hope abound. Many of us as kids (or maybe even as adults) may have experimented with the “close your eyes and open the bible” method. Wherever your eyes landed, in whatever book you opened to, that was to be “God’s message” to you; to be accepted and heeded. Sometimes it did work. But when it didn’t? Start the process all over again!

Today I thought I’d narrow that exercise for you, by limiting the exercise to the Psalms, and recording each text I landed on, to demonstrate how apt and helpful the Psalms can be. But as I sat down with my bible to start the exercise, I lost my grip on it and it opened all on its own…to Habakkuk. Yup, that’s right, a tiny little 3-chapter book near the end of the Old Testament.

Habakkuk is known as a (very) minor prophet. There is little to no info about who he was, and Jewish and Christian writers place his authorship in a myriad of historical times and places. So nah, maybe another time… or… should I trust in “God’s message” to me this day? I read a little further in the introductory section and there it was. The Scholar, Marvin Sweeney writes: “Despite its small size, Habakkuk plays important roles in Judaism and Christianity…In modern times, Habakkuk’s address to the Lord raises the question of divine absence in relation to the Shoah (Holocaust) and other atrocities”. Boom. How incredibly timely this tiny book is again now, even though it only 3 chapters and written roughly 2500 years ago.

Scripture has a powerful and singularly unique way of speaking our thoughts when yet they are still unformed and voicing the laments we are unable to cry, out loud. It also gives guidance as to how to trust and pray to God, who is in fact not divinely absent but actually completely and utterly present, especially in this time of grief, fear, isolation and wobbly faith.

How does the book end? Well… it’s only 3 chapters. Why not take the time and read it for yourself and come share your insights on our Zoom call tonight? Or just come as you are and learn, share and be fed.

Seeking God’s wisdom with you,

Rev Jen