Moreover, just as wine leads astray the proud and powerful man, he remains restless; he has expanded his appetite— like the afterlife or death itself, he is never satisfied. (Hab 2:5, ISV)
For those who are proud, there is no satisfaction. In my last post I wrote down some of the pieces of wisdom I’ve gleaned. One of them was, If I am restless it is about me, if I am restful, it is about God. If my life is about me, I am prideful, and I will never be happy for long with myself or with the way things are around me.
It is interesting that I am taking a class on foreign policy right now and studying the people of other nations. There are so many who fit Habakkuk 2:5. They are egocentric. They think they are right, and the world should be run according to their definition. If things do not go according to what they think is right, they are very bent out of shape, and often take violent measures to try to change things. They don’t know how to consider someone else’s viewpoint. They don’t know the importance of compromise or respect. In their greed they have gathered up many nations and swallowed many peoples. (The last part of Hab 2:5)
This past week I have had some struggles, and I have gone back to one of my lifeline scriptures, “My grace is sufficient, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” II Cor 12:9 The word “sufficient” also can be translated “content” or “satisfied.” I know that God’s grace can give me what I need, but do I know it is ALL is all I need. Am I greedy? Do I want something more than that? Do I possibly want to be in control and have things my way? I know one thing I want that is a spiritual stumbling block — I want to be strong, not weak.
I love what Kristi Hickman said about strengths and weaknesses at our Women’s Day this past weekend. She pictured God creating each one of us and giving each one of us strengths. And then God said, “She is going to be weak in this area, but that’s okay, because then she will reach out for her Daddy, me, and I will come and hold her hand.”
I need to learn to be satisfied. I cannot beat myself up for shortcomings and mistakes. These are the things that cause me to reach out for God. If I was the way I would like to be, I would be stunted, because I was created to walk in a relationship with God.
Even more than that, though, if personal strength is my goal, then I am like the verse from Habakkuk I opened this blog with. In one translation of this verse, it reads, They are as greedy as the grave. I am craving personal perfection like a drug, like the wine that is mentioned in the verse.
In closing, I am sharing a song I wrote that helped me when we first moved here. I say I wrote it, but I mainly wrote the melody. It is really several verses cobbled together.
You brought me to a spacious place
Forgave my sin, that grievous weight.
I went through water, went through fire.
You brought me where abundance lies.
The boundary lines have fallen in pleasant places.
Surely my allotment is fine and gracious.
For you, O Lord have delivered my soul from death.
My eyes from tears, my feet from stumbling.
That I may walk before you in the light of life.
Run in your path for you have set me free.