Listen to this devotional:
Listen while you read: "O Happy Day"1 (Lyrics)
Each spring, the melting snows flow into the Madawaska River. From its source in Algonquin Provincial Park, it spills from lake to lake, punctuated by hydro dams along its course, until at last, it meets the Ottawa River. The lakes rise and break their chains of ice, and one by one, the hydro crews open the dams to release the pent-up waters to the waiting lakes below. Often, the dams are frozen and coated with manacles of ice. My brother once filmed the opening of Mountain Chute, one of the dams. The force of the released torrent cracked the ice wall like crisp candy, and it crashed with fury and great splashes into the water below, with a deafening roar.
Such powerful forces of nature were known to the prophet Habakkuk.
Habakkuk 3:10 – The mountains saw you and writhed; the raging waters swept on; the deep gave forth its voice; it lifted its hands on high. (ESV)
He wrote at a time when, in anxiety and confusion, the nation of Israel waited for an oncoming Assyrian invasion, and the people were very afraid. Yet, Habakkuk knew that God was still looking after His people.
The torrents of water are strong, but our God is mighty, and has intervened to save His people many times in the past. God is merciful, a Saviour who rescues us when there seems to be no hope.
Psalm 103:8-9 – The Lord is merciful and gracious, slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love. He will not always chide, nor will he keep his anger forever. (ESV)
God is our Saviour, who has given His Word and is to be trusted.
Habakkuk 3:17-19a – Though the fig tree should not blossom, nor fruit be on the vines, the produce of the olive fail and the fields yield no food, the flock be cut off from the fold and there be no herd in the stalls, yet I will rejoice in the Lord; I will take joy in the God of my salvation. God, the Lord, is my strength. (ESV)
Today, if we are glancing around in anxiety, let us remember God's mighty salvation, His rich mercy, and His worthiness of our trust.
Prayer: Dearest Lord, as a little child relies on a care beyond his own, knows he's neither strong nor wise, fears to stir a step alone: let me thus with Thee abide, as my Father, Guard and Guide (John Newton, 1725-1807). Thank You, dear Lord, for Your strength, mercy, and presence each day of our lives. Amen.