Do you ever wonder where God is? Why God is silent? Do you carry anger at the injustice you see? Or question the goodness of a God who allows these things?
You could be a prophet.
Habakkuk is an oft overlooked portion of Scripture, but this leader & spokesperson for the Divine let’s God have it.
“Lord, how long will I call for help & you not listen?
I cry out to you, but you don’t deliver us.
Why do you show me injustice? The instructions of God are useless. Justice is perverted.” (Habakkuk 1:2-4)
Raw. Honest. Harsh. Prophetic.
Habakkuk is not unfaithful here. He isn’t told to stop or repent. He also doesn’t get easy answers. Or a tangible solution to his problems.
Feeling these things or asking these questions doesn’t make him a heretic or mean he walked away from his beliefs. In fact, I’d argue that by asking them he leaned into faith.
He believed there is a good God & now wants that God to show up. The God he was told about. The God he was promised. The silence & absence of God trouble him. As, perhaps, they should.
What if anger & doubt are not threats to faith, but expressions of it? What if we spent time & created space to hold these feelings, rather than skip to the platitudes & life lessons? What if we made room for “letting God have it” rather than pretend everything is shiny & bright? What if people didn’t feel the need to walk away from faith or community for asking the same questions as a person who has a book of the Bible named after them?
When everything is terrible & falling apart, “How long, oh Lord?” may be the most faithful prayer we can offer.
May we find the courage to name what is wrong. May we have faith enough to be bothered by what seems like silence & absence from God. May we expect a better God. And may we create space for the prophets among us who don’t have all the answers, but are asking all the right questions.