- Phone: (813) 655-7431
- Meeting Address:
15326 Fishhawk Blvd. Lithia, FL 33547
- Saturday: 5 PM
- Sunday: 9 & 11 AM
“Why do you make me look at injustice? Why do you tolerate wrongdoing? Destruction and violence are before me; there is strife, and conflict abounds.” – Hab. 1:3
Have you ever found yourself driving down a country road on a moonless, foggy night? There is no one behind you, and no cars headed toward you. All you can see is the small bubble of illumination cast from your own headlights—beyond is only deep, inky darkness. No matter how hard you squint your eyes to see through the gloom, that darkness remains impenetrable, it seems to close in around you like a thick blanket. You may even begin to panic, slowing your vehicle a few miles per hour at a time, worrying that some sort of danger may lie waiting just beyond your little cone of light.
Six hundred years before Christ arrived, the young prophet Habakkuk found himself surrounded by a spiritual darkness on all sides. God’s chosen people, the people He had rescued from slavery and delivered to the Promised land, had repeatedly abandoned their faith and turned to false gods. Immorality, corruption, and greed had become the spiritual markers of the day. Beyond the borders of Israel, nation rose up against nation, carrying word of destruction, slavery, and chaos. It pressed in against Habakkuk, weighing upon him until he could stand it no longer. He cried out to the LORD, questioning how this God who loved righteousness and deplored wickedness and oppression, could truly be on the throne with so much evil thriving all around.
The God of the universe answered the young man, showing him how He would remain faithful, even when His people were not. He showed Habakkuk that His love for justice and righteousness had not been snuffed out, and that He was going to do something in Habakkuk’s days that he would not believe (Hab. 1:5).
We may find a similar sort of darkness pressing in against us through our spiritual journey. You’ll find it at your workplace, at school, and streaming into your eyes and ears through social media and the news. The light of the Holy Spirit burning inside of you might begin to feel small and insignificant in the face of all that this fallen world will throw at you. Like the car on the country road, you may be tempted to shrink back from that darkness, slowing or redirecting your path in an attempt to escape the gloom. But God calls us out into that darkness, bearing the only light that can cut through it, pushing it back in order to find those who are lost – declaring in a loud voice an echo of Habakkuk’s final proclamation: “Though the fig tree does not bud and there are no grapes on the vines, though the olive crop fails and the fields produce no food, though there are no sheep in the pen and no cattle in the stalls, yet I will rejoice in the Lord, I will be joyful in God my Savior.” (Hab. 3:17-18).