Winter of Worship: Expectations of Praise
February 11, 2020
Habakkuk 3. 1- 19 (CEB)
The prayer of Habakkuk the prophet, according to Shigionoth:
2 Lord, I have heard your reputation.
I have seen your work.
Over time, revive it.
Over time, make it known.
Though angry, remember compassion.
3 God comes from Teman
and the holy one from the mountain of Paran. Selah
His majesty covers the heavens
and his praise fills the earth.
4 His radiance is like the sunlight,
with rays flashing from his hand.
That is the hiding place of his power.
5 Pestilence walks in front of him.
Plague marches at his feet.
6 He stops and measures the earth.
He looks and sets out against the nations.
The everlasting mountains collapse;
the eternal hills bow down;
the eternal paths belong to him.
7 I saw the tents of Cushan under duress.
The curtains of the land of Midian were quaking.
8 Was the Lord raging against the rivers?
Or was your anger directed against the rivers?
Or was your fury directed against the sea
when you rode on your horses
or rode your chariots to victory?
9 You raise up your empty bow,
uttering curses for the arrows.[a] Selah
With rivers you split open the earth.
10 The mountains see you and writhe.
A flood of water rushes through.
The deep utters its voice;
it raises its hands aloft.[b]
11 Sun and moon stand still high above.
With the light, your arrows shoot,
your spear at the flash of lightning.
12 In fury, you stride the earth;
in anger you tread the nations.
13 You go out to save your people.
For the salvation of your anointed
you smashed the head of the house of wickedness,
laying bare the foundation up to the neck. Selah
14 You pierce the head of his warrior with his own spear.
His warriors are driven off,
those who take delight in oppressing us,[c]
those who take pleasure in secretly devouring the poor.
15 You make your horses tread on the sea;
turbulent waters foam.
16 I hear and my insides tremble.
My lips quiver at the sound.
Rottenness enters my bones.
I tremble while I stand,[d]
while I wait for the day of distress to come against the people who attack us.
17 Though the fig tree doesn’t bloom,
and there’s no produce on the vine;
though the olive crop withers,
and the fields don’t provide food;
though the sheep are cut off from the pen,
and there are no cattle in the stalls;
18 I will rejoice in the Lord.
I will rejoice in the God of my deliverance.
19 The Lord God is my strength.
He will set my feet like the deer.
He will let me walk upon the heights.[e]
To the director, with stringed instruments
Acts 27. 13- 38 (CEB)
13 When a gentle south wind began to blow, they thought they could carry out their plan. They pulled up anchor and sailed closely along the coast of Crete. 14 Before long, a hurricane-strength wind known as a northeaster swept down from Crete. 15 The ship was caught in the storm and couldn’t be turned into the wind. So we gave in to it, and it carried us along. 16 After sailing under the shelter of an island called Cauda, we were able to control the lifeboat only with difficulty. 17 They brought the lifeboat aboard, then began to wrap the ship with cables to hold it together. Fearing they might run aground on the sandbars of the Gulf of Syrtis, they lowered the anchor and let the ship be carried along. 18 We were so battered by the violent storm that the next day the men began throwing cargo overboard. 19 On the third day, they picked up the ship’s gear and hurled it into the sea. 20 When neither the sun nor the moon appeared for many days and the raging storm continued to pound us, all hope of our being saved from this peril faded.
21 For a long time no one had eaten. Paul stood up among them and said, “Men, you should have complied with my instructions not to sail from Crete. Then we would have avoided this damage and loss. 22 Now I urge you to be encouraged. Not one of your lives will be lost, though we will lose the ship. 23 Last night an angel from the God to whom I belong and whom I worship stood beside me. 24 The angel said, ‘Don’t be afraid, Paul! You must stand before Caesar! Indeed, God has also graciously given you everyone sailing with you.’ 25 Be encouraged, men! I have faith in God that it will be exactly as he told me. 26 However, we must run aground on some island.”
27 On the fourteenth night, we were being carried across the Adriatic Sea. Around midnight the sailors began to suspect that land was near. 28 They dropped a weighted line to take soundings and found the water to be about one hundred twenty feet deep. After proceeding a little farther, we took soundings again and found the water to be about ninety feet deep. 29 Afraid that we might run aground somewhere on the rocks, they hurled out four anchors from the stern and began to pray for daylight. 30 The sailors tried to abandon the ship by lowering the lifeboat into the sea, pretending they were going to lower anchors from the bow. 31 Paul said to the centurion and his soldiers, “Unless they stay in the ship, you can’t be saved from peril.” 32 The soldiers then cut the ropes to the lifeboat and let it drift away.
33 Just before daybreak, Paul urged everyone to eat. He said, “This is the fourteenth day you’ve lived in suspense, and you’ve not had even a bite to eat. 34 I urge you to take some food. Your health depends on it. None of you will lose a single hair from his head.” 35 After he said these things, he took bread, gave thanks to God in front of them all, then broke it and began to eat. 36 Everyone was encouraged and took some food. (37 In all, there were two hundred seventy-six of us on the ship.) 38 When they had eaten as much as they wanted, they lightened the ship by throwing the grain into the sea.
We give praise to God for all that He has given to us, but also for those things we have not yet received. We trust that God works for the good of those who serve Him!
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