Though the fig tree does not bud
and there are no grapes on the vines,
though the olive crop fails
and the fields produce no food,
though there are no sheep in the pen
and no cattle in the stalls,
yet I will rejoice in the LORD,
I will be joyful in God, my Saviour.
If you are like me, you understand agricultural terms. Perhaps you have never been to a farm? These verses might present more of a challenge for you.
Let’s say if you lose your job, there is no food on the table, and nothing is going right. Would you still praise God? Would I?
Visualize with me the days of Habakkuk. The vast army of Babylonians was invading Israel. Habakkuk was waiting on God for deliverance from this calamity. The Israelites had been living in sin and hard-hearted rebellion.
God had stripped all earthly comforts to His people. War meant famine. The people of Israel faced a desperate situation.
I am reading Habakkuk in my personal devotions. There is no coincidence in that. I learn each time from the prophet Habakkuk’s faith. Here, he resolves to be steadfast in faith and finds joy in His God alone.
Could we, like Habakkuk, show gratitude when all around us crumble into the dust? Would we thank God in those circumstances, too? When it comes down to it, the genuine test of faith would be to have everything stripped of us, and then still praise God.
Yet I will rejoice. How hard that would be. But not impossible with God giving us the grace to sustain us and keep us.
We would have to cling to the joy of the LORD as our salvation. Our LORD, the one who gives us eternal life. And that alone would be our hope. As it was, Habakkuk’s.
Habakkuk prayed for the revival of the nation of Israel. We should pray for the revival of our nation as well. We are in desperate times as far as faithful Christians go. Many want to live life on their own terms, not God’s.
God was sovereign over world events then. And He is now, and He always will be. He orchestrates all happenings for a reason. Our duty is to trust Him in good times and in bad.
Some will blame God for the suffering in the world. Some will get bitter and lose faith. How many of us would have the resolve of Habakkuk and praise God when everything gets stripped from us?
Not one of us could do that unless God equipped us daily to persevere in His grace alone.
With empty stomachs, something we know little about in the western world, and no personal possessions, would we still rejoice in our God?
I don’t want this daily devotional to be a downer. The goal is to be encouraging.
Therefore we shall close with today…
The Sovereign LORD is my strength;
He makes my feet like the feet of a
He enables me to go on the heights.
AND SO HE DOES.
Amen and Amen.