On October 12, 2019 — Kenyan distant runner and Olympic marathon record holder Eliud Kipchoge became the first person in history to successfully run the 26.2 mile marathon in under two hours (1:59:40)! How did Eliud break this seemingly impossible marathon barrier? He did it with the help of friends. These friends were all top-notch runners — some were themselves Olympic medalists. Every runner has had dreams about shattering this speed barrier. So when the racing world heard of Eliud’s plan, over 41 runners came together to help him achieve his goal.
The plan called for Eliud to run within what they called a “slipstream.” Teams of seven pacemakers at a time (five in front, and two in back), would rotate in and out of the racetrack to create a sort of air-pocket around Eliud, while at the same time setting a blistering pace for him to do his thing! As the band of runners approached the home stretch, the last group of pacemakers peeled away to allow Eliud to go for broke — and as they say, the rest is history!
The message contained in the book of Habakkuk has also come down to us through the efforts of an ultra runner.
“Write down the revelation and make it plain on tablets so that a herald may run with it. For the revelation awaits an appointed time; it speaks of the end and will not prove false. Though it linger, wait for it; it will certainly come and will not delay.” – Habakkuk 2:2-3
The lone runner who took off with the revelation given to Habakkuk has now been running for 2,620 years. Surely this historic run ranks as “The Mother of all Marathons!” The clay tablets that our unnamed runner so carefully guarded when he began his epic race have now all but turned to dust. As the runner made his way across treacherous mountains and raging rivers, a piece of the tablet may have gotten knocked off here, and another piece broken off there. What were the dangers and difficulties that he may have gone through. Two and a half centuries is a long time to be running! How did the message inscribed on those clay tablets survive this sustained run?
It turns out that our runner too had friends. Along the way, numberless scribes painstakingly made copies of his treasure — first onto papyrus, then onto parchment, next onto paper, and now onto the cloud. What we have between the pages of our Bible today is of inestimable value.
“The words of the Lord are flawless, like silver purified in a crucible, like gold refined seven times.” – Psalm 12:6
“Your word is a lamp for my feet, a light on my path.” – Psalm 119:105
God tells Habakkuk, “… the revelation awaits an appointed time; it speaks of the end and will not prove false. Though it linger, wait for it; it will certainly come and will not delay.” – Habakkuk 2:3
What exactly was this revelation that “awaits an appointed time,” and “speaks of the end?” Hopefully this isn’t talking about us — or is it? Are we the people on whom the end of the age has now descended upon?
The revelation concerned – Violence – Injustice – Wrongdoing – Destruction – Strife – Conflict – the Law being paralyzed – Justice never prevailing – the Righteous being hemmed in by the wicked – Justice being perverted (Habakkuk 1:2-4). What an ugly list! Can we partner with the Lord to erase this list off the face of the earth? God made it clear that we can choose to live under His protective dome, or we can choose to live exposed to harmful outside forces. We get to decide. This is why Habakkuk’s message is so relevant for us.
Much of biblical prophecy can have multiple historically significant points where God’s word can touchdown to come into play with unfolding circumstances that have similarities or parallels with past events. These can be compared to the multiple layers of mountain ranges that stretch out to the far horizon. Our eyes can make a general sweep of the distant mountains, or our eyes can lock onto any one of those ranges by intentionally focusing our attention on it. We may choose to linger on a feature if we see similarities, or we may merely wish to compare and contrast what we see. It seems that God too likes to do that! The Spirit can be like a wandering minstrel — wisdom will often drop in and sing for us if we are receptive.
The season we are in right now has an uncanny resemblance to the time in which Habakkuk lived and prophesied. Dark storm-clouds are even now gathering thick above our heads just as they did in Habakkuk’s days. If this is true, then what he wrote down for his people can be relevant for us in our time as well. We should take up Habakkuk’s message as a wake up call!
God is presently calling a new generation of ultra runners — faithful heralds who will run with the message that He is chiseling onto their hearts for such a time as this. God always wants to bless us. Our ultimate good is what is top most on His heart. Yet there is the part that only we can play — the choice that only we can make — the path that only we can take! Can we relieve our lonely runner of his heavy burden by taking up his message and applying it to our lives today? Or will he need to keep running with his important message for yet another thousand years?
This is now our time — this is now our day. What will we do if chastisement should come knocking on our door?
Together with you on the trail,
🙏 Prayer Requests 🙏
- Please continue to lift up our daughter Rebecca in prayer.
- Rebecca was rescheduled to check into the hospital this Friday, September 25th. Let’s pray for a safe delivery for her! Let’s especially pray that God will keep Rebecca and her baby in perfect health! Let’s lift up Rebecca’s husband Luke as well!
- Breaking News!
- Rebecca and Luke have just welcomed their baby Maya into this world! Thank you one and all for your many prayers for baby Maya Zvmiram Ramsdale!
- Let’s continue to pray for the United States of America.
- Let’s pray that true unity will be restored throughout the country. Let’s pray that God will grant His wisdom to each and every person.
- Please join us in continuing to pray for Thailand.
- Like many places around the world, Thailand too is experiencing its share of social unrest. The effects of the coronavirus, the economic downturn, and the travel restrictions, are all taking a toll on the country.