Welcome to the first week of our June series When God Doesn’t Make Sense. This four-week series explores four stories from the Minor Prophets. This weekend, Senior Pastor Jeff Manion shares Habakkuk’s journey from complaining to God to trusting him. In this story, Habakkuk complains to God, God responds and Habakkuk trusts God in the face of terrible circumstances.
Building healthy and life-giving relationships.
What has been new or challenging in your life since last time the group met? Spend 20–30 minutes checking in with each other.
In this week’s story, we see Habakkuk struggling with what he views as God’s inaction. Should a small group be a place for someone to discuss their frustrations with life or even their frustrations with God? Explain. How do you think a healthy small group should respond to a person’s honest frustrations?
Share part of your story.
Share about a time you complained to God. How did it go?
Taking next steps toward Christ together.
Have someone read Habakkuk 1.1-13 and 3.16-19 aloud. What do you notice in these verses? What stands out?
Habakkuk seems confused and upset with God. What was Habakkuk upset about? Why do some people get upset with God?
The story of Habakkuk contains many elements of what is called a lament. Lament is facing God with the pain of life. A lament consists of at least three parts:
- Tell God what is going on.
- Ask for help.
- Express your trust.
What’s the importance of each of these three parts? What freedom can a prayer of lament give us? What happens when you leave one out?
Habakkuk is frustrated with God and God’s response doesn’t seem to resolve his internal conflict at all. What is God’s solution to the gross injustice? Why isn’t Habakkuk happy with God’s plan?
God uses the Babylonians to bring the hearts of his rebellious people back to him. When you run off in rebellion, God can use anything he wants to get you back home. Is this a comforting or scary thought to you? Tell why.
God was willing to use harsh means with the Israelites to bring them back to him. What are some ways we can safeguard our hearts so God doesn’t have to use harsh means to bring us back to him?
Habakkuk realizes the solution to the injustice is going to be difficult. How do you think you would respond if you were Habakkuk?
Habakkuk moves from not sure if he trusts God in Chapter 1 to willing to trust God even in the face of devastation in Chapter 3. Why do you think he makes this move? When have you experienced a heart change like this in your life? How did the change come about?
Habakkuk waits patiently for God to work. Why is patience so important in the midst of difficult circumstances? How can we open our hearts to what God has to offer in desperate seasons?
Habakkuk says he will be joyful, even if bad things happen. What is the difference between happiness and joy? Who do you know who lives life with joy even during pain and confusion? How did they develop a trust in God that gives joy in the midst of a trying time?
Habakkuk declares, “The Sovereign Lord is my strength.” How have you experienced God to be your source of strength when your life has been uprooted or upended?
How can you use these behaviors (patience, joy and strength) to coach and encourage people who are going through difficult or desperate seasons?
Where do you need to grow and develop in the journey of taking issues to God and trusting him?
INVEST IN OTHERS
Valuing people outside the group and outside the faith.
Discuss how you and your group can better engage the people in your life outside your small group.
Discuss ways you can personally serve in the church and community this summer. If you need ideas, visit adabible.org/serving.
Last week we asked you to identify others in your neighborhood or workplace you could invite to your small group or to attend church with you. Take some time to talk about any opportunities you had to extend an invitation and pray for more opportunities to invite them.
Download a printable PDF here.