CHN is a network of volunteers from churches throughout the United States of America and throughout the nations. Our mission and passion is to carry on the Great Commission given by our Lord Jesus Christ.

July 2007

“The Lord God is my strength, and He will make my feet like hinds feet, and he will make me to walk upon mine high places....” (Habakkuk 3:19)

Dear Friend,

Trusting that all is well with you and your loved ones. We are fine, and enjoying our time of summer ministry. It is always a blessing to be able to get outdoors and meet with friends and neighbors, and catch up with all that has happened throughout the long winter. In Brooklyn, the best place to be in the evening is sitting outside on your stoop, watching the people walk by. Every now and then someone stops to say hello and catch up with neighborhood news. This is when you find out who got married, who got divorced, who died, who graduated from medical school, who had a baby, and so on. If it is just news, then I would not label it as gossip, it is just learning all the events in people’s lives, both good and bad. (I had to make that clear! (Smile) ) Sometimes the person who stops to talk is in need of encouragement, and this is where the joy of ministry sets in! Simply offering a word of hope to someone can mean the world to them. It is like a fresh spring of water in a dry desert place. God is able to take that word of hope and spring it into action to change the course of someone’s life. Sometimes a simple word can spark an idea that will spur into action what is needed to take a person from the deepest despair to the heights of glory!

I love the Book of Habakkuk. The lessons learned from this Prophet show us how to live in times of uncertainty and fear. Habakkuk served in Judah during the time the Babylonian empire threatened to overrun the country. (2 Chron. 35:20-36:8) As we do today when we see so much cruelty, violence and greed, he cried out to God, asking Him why He allowed such evil to go unrestrained! So much was going on then, people were worshiping idols, they were sacrificing their own children to pagan gods, and so much more. Habakkuk wanted to know,... where was righteousness? Where was the Lord? When we read about murder, abortions, war, sexual immorality, hate crimes, etc. we are filled with anguish, and we wonder what will become of this world? What will it be like when our children get married, and what about our grandchildren? It is so easy to go into despair when we see these things. But Habakkuk believed God. He questioned, he complained, he was in despair, but... he directed his questions and feelings straight to the Lord! He did not grumble under his breath and talk to himself! He spoke to God! This is what we have to learn, and to practice! We think that if we question God, He will get angry with us, but that is not the case! God loves it when we communicate with Him! He is our Heavenly Father, and He knows all about us anyhow! We are not hiding anything from Him, He knows exactly how we feel and what we are thinking. But our Daddy God loves us so much that He wants to hug us and encourage us! And He encourages us through His Word.

The Book of Habakkuk shows us how to live in these times of trial and uncertainty. God speaks of the ungodly in Chapter Two verse four; “See, he is puffed up; his desires are not upright”... then goes on to say “but the righteous live by his faith.” Those of us who have accepted Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior, have this gift of faith! The Bible shows us how to live, and as we walk in Him, we live and grow in Him! Glory!

Habakkuk cried out to God and he made his feeling clear. He knew the Scriptures, and He reminded God of His Word, and His past deeds, of how He divided the Red Sea and how He took His people through the wilderness! He praised God and worshiped Him in his deepest despair. He said to God: “You went forth and have come for the salvation of Your people, for the deliverance and victory of Your anointed [people Israel]: You smote the head of the house of the wicked, laying bare the foundation even to the neck. Selah [pause and think of that!] (Hab. 3:13 Amplified Version) Wow! Habakkuk knew God, He knew His character and His deeds. In his deepest trials he chose to cry out to God, to let Him know exactly what was on his mind. It is also clear that He chose to praise God, and think of His magnificence. He trembled in fear because of what was going on at the time, but at the same time he chose to trust God.

What is it that we chose to do? When we look around us, and read the papers and hear the news we hear so much bad news. It seems like every day there is another threat, or talk of threats from terrorists. Every day we hear of crime in the streets, family problems, children going astray. How then, do we choose to live? Is it with courage and hope and joy? Do we choose to seek God and speak out to Him and tell Him everything that is on our mind? Or do we simply complain and grumble to ourselves? Do we truly understand that God is our Source, our Supply, our Hope, our Deliverer, our Lover, our Savior? Is it written in our hearts? If it truly is written in our hearts, we will look up at the sky, enjoy the bright sunshine of the day, smell the roses, and laugh at the squirrels racing up the trees in our parks or back yard. We will enjoy the serenity of a kitten as she bathes herself in a sun spot near our window. We will giggle as our puppy happily licks our face.  We will take the time to play and laugh with our children. We will take the time to listen to our elderly neighbor tell the stories of how he or she grew up. We will take the time to watch a sunset. We will lie on the grass at night and count the stars. We will give praise and glory to our Heavenly Father who is our strength! “The Lord God is my Strength, my personal bravery, and my invincible army: He makes my feet like hinds’ feet and will make me to walk (not to stand still in terror, but to walk) and make (spiritual) progress upon my high places ( of trouble, suffering, or responsibility)! (vs. 19, Amp. Version) Our God is our Source of Hope, of Love, of Joy, of Peace, of Comfort. Talk to Him today. Tell Him how you feel, and tell Him about your concerns. He is waiting for you with open arms!

God bless you,

Rev. Barbara A. Yovino, Ph.D.