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Sunday, November 22, 2015

BEING THANKFUL IS A CHOICE



Hab 3:17 Although the fig tree shall not blossom, neither shall fruit be in the vines; the labour of the olive shall fail, and the fields shall yield no meat; the flock shall be cut off from the fold, and there shall be no herd in the stalls:
18 Yet I will rejoice in the LORD, I will joy in the God of my salvation.

In 1620, 102 Pilgrims had come to this continent to build a new world where they would be free to worship God. Soon fifty-six died due to starvation, disease and the cold winter. However, they did not give up. In 1621, 46 Pilgrims and 91 Indians met to give thanks for a bountiful harvest and for the preservation of their lives.

They had every reason to be depressed and discouraged, but they chose to give thanks. The book of Habakkuk was written against a backdrop of apostasy, judgment and unbelievable hardship. It was written during a time when Jehoiakim, the King of Judah, led the people back into idolatry and away from the Lord. As a result, God is preparing to judge the nation. Habakkuk is having trouble understanding why God would use a heathen nation like Babylon to punish His people. He cannot understand why God doesn't just purge their sins and draw them back to Himself and to righteousness. There are similarities between Habakkuk and Job. He argues his case, but in the end he realizes that God is not to be worshiped merely because of the temporal, material and physical blessings of life, but simply for who He is. Thus he ends his words with a song of thanksgiving to God for who He is and for the unchanging benefits that belong to those who know Him! Habakkuk has reason to fret and question, but he chooses instead to be thankful.

Keywords of these verses include, ''although'' and ''yet.'' Habakkuk is saying, ''I don't understand all that is happening to me and the nation of Judah, but in spite of it all I choose thanksgiving. I want to use these verses to show that regardless of how things may look on the surface, we have a reason to choose thanksgiving.

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