Food 4 the Road 5: Creative complaining

Today’s Advent task is to attempt crafting a friendship bracelet like this one:

Wikihow makes it look easy: https://www.wikihow.com/Make-a-Friendship-Bracelet

It’s inspired by another tiny prophet: Habbakuk. 

Writing (probably) during the Chaldean period when Babylon was at the height of her power, he converses with Jehovah through a series of complaints to which God must respond regarding God’s punishment and providence.

Do you have any complaints that you would like to make against God today? Choose a colour for your bracelet that will reflect your complaints.

Throughout the conversation, Habakkuk wrestles, as many of us do, with the apparent prosperity of the wicked while good and holy people suffer, but holds stubbornly to the ancient stories of God coming forth to deliver his people despite the “evidence” of God’s inactivity.

His faith is based on God’s faithfulness in the past; on the songs and stories of God’s people throughout the ages. From Joshua’s battle with the Amorites when the sun stood still and the moon stopped in the sky until the nation had been avenged (Habakkuk 3:11), to the surging waters of the Red Sea trampling down the Egyptian’s horses and chariots as the Israelites fled captivity (Habakkuk 3:15), Habakkuk has been nursed on the accounts of a God of Action – Mighty to Save – that enable him to wait patiently despite a clear threat to his personal safety and the wellbeing of his nation as a whole.

What are the songs and stories that you hold on to to remind you of God’s faithfulness? Weave a new colour into your bracelet design as a symbol of God’s goodness.

He writes, in conclusion of his conversation with Jehovah, of his conscious decision to trust in the Lord and rejoice in his Saviour despite their current plight:

“Fig trees may no longer bloom,
or vineyards produce grapes;
olive trees may be fruitless,
and harvest time a failure;
sheep pens may be empty,
and cattle stalls vacant—
but I will still celebrate
because the Lord God  saves me”

Habbakuk 3:17-18

Habakkuk sees everywhere “evidence” of God’s inactivity and apparent desertion yet chooses to celebrate, in faith, the God who has shown himself through the ages as mighty to save.

Choose a bold colour for the final strand of your bracelet as a symbol of your choice to celebrate. How might you share this choice in the world today?

About Yvonne Ghavalas

A minister in the Uniting Church in Australia, sharer of stories, sandwich enthusiast, seeker, and sometimes fool (archaic), sporadic blogger at liturgies4life.com

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