“How long, O Lord, will I call for help and You will not hear? O cry out to You, Violence!” Yet You do not save. Why do You make me see iniquity and cause me to look on wickedness?” (Hab. 1:2-3). God’s response: “Look among the nations! Observe! Be astonished! Wonder! Because I am doing something in your days – You would not believe if you were told.” (Hab. 1:5).
Hey Gang: There are many days when I feel like picking a mountain top and shouting at the top of my lungs, “How long, O Lord!” Habakkuk went on, “The law is ignored, justice is never upheld. For the wicked surround the righteous; Therefore, justice comes out perverted” (vs. 4). Does that not sound familiar? While sitting in the command seat at Eagle Village and reading the case files of the young folks who crossed my path I would often say, “This is the bottom of the barrel”, only to learn there is no bottom to that barrel.
We truly live in the age described by Paul in his letter to his adopted spiritual son Timothy: “But evil men and impostor will proceed from bad to worse, deceiving and being deceived” (2 Tim. 3:13). Isaiah put it this way: “Woe to those who call evil good, and good evil; Who substitute darkness for light and light for darkness; who substitute bitter for sweet and sweet for bitter! (5:20).
My mother always said that of the four boys in our family, I was the one that was most like her. In the early years I tended to disagree with her but in later year I learned I cannot deny one trait that I picked up from her- was she was a fast sleeper, another name for those of us who do well on five or less hours of sleep. Now there a piece of trivia that has no earthly value. I say that to lay the foundation for what I am about to send along to you.
The clock on the mantle reads five o’clock. My intention for this morning was to go through the tragic
events of the past months, a pile of about three inches, and put together a pitty-party-type
communique to make you as miserable as I. After screening a dozen or so of the gruesome articles I
question popped into my head – what are you doing? Why are you filling your head with all of that
Why don’t you get into that other pile, you know the small one over there that you have pushed into the back of your desk kind of out of sight. We do that, don’t we? Don’t we tend to turn to the gory headlines the press uses to sell their papers and put the good thing on page thirteen down in the corner just under the obituaries?
On the top of the pile – I believe God put it there just for me because He wanted me to share it with you. It was written by one of my favorite writers, Anne Graham Lotz. I like her writing because her heart is filled with hope and she knows in her heart all that is happening in our world is in the Father’s hands.
In it she wrote of an experience in Elijah’s life that you can reads about in I Kings 19. I will not elaborate only to say, if you dig into the passage you will see some parallels between what God was saying to Elijah, in the storms of nature, and what He is saying today to those who are willing to listen. She suggests that his message can be broken down into four parts:
The first, BE COMFORTED, God spoke to Elijah. Neat heh? Isn’t it so very wonderful, that even in his day, when everything that can be shaken is being shaken, God will never left His children or forsake them?
The second, BE BLESSED, God told Elijah, ‘don’t sweat it, I will supply you needs, all of them! Hey gang, I have tested this promise many times and He has never failed me. Is it okay to test God? Not sure? Read Malachi 3:10.
Third, BE ENCOURAGED, God told Elijah there were more believers around him than he knew about. He did tell us to keep your antenna tuned to the Heavenlies- there are angels out there that we are unaware of.
And finally, BE READY, even when the alligators are nipping at your back side, know that God is right there with you right now. Note the final step in Elijah’s journey was a flaming chariot, part of God’s transportation system. This we know, heaven is waiting for every one of Jesus’ children.
So, my good buddies, If you are awakened at four o’clock, don’t just roll over, clear your ears and listen carefully. Perhaps there is special message coming from God’s-hot line to you. Sometimes we call them God-O-Grams!