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During the dark months of January and February we will look into two dark Old Testament books to see the light of God’s work — Habakkuk and Esther. The prophet Habakkuk learned that God would use a people even more wicked than Israel had become to chastise his people. It was a hard pill to swallow. We’ll spend four Sundays looking at the three chapters of the prophet’s journey to joy in a dark season.

Esther is a wonderful, strange story of God’s intervention to save his people from annihilation. In ten chapters, God’s name is never mentioned. Now what do you make of a book of the Bible that never mentions God!? The story gives rise to the Jews’ greatest celebration of the year, Purim. These will be some fascinating Sundays.

Those two dark stories will lead us to Lent. Traditionally, that is a season for sober self-evaluation but I plan to take us in a different direction this year — to the great hymns in Revelation. More on that later.

Here’s my challenge: Please read Habakkuk and Esther! You will get so much more out of these sermons and worship services if you have prepared.