Fruit of the Spirit, Joy

No Matter What

Habakkuk 3:18

Yet I will rejoice in the LORD; I will take joy in the God of my salvation.

At first glance this is just another lovely verse about joy, but on a closer look it is an incredible statement of faith, and it is all because of that first word, ‘Yet’.

Habakkuk was living through very dark days and he was having some trouble in understanding God’s plan. The Assyrians had taken Israel and the people were now suffering under another regime, as they had done many times before because of their disregard of their sovereign Lord and King.

Habakkuk was greatly distressed and cry unto the Lord… ‘destruction and violence are before me.. justice never goes forth.. why do you idly look at wrong?’ The Lord replied, “I am doing a work in your days that you would not believe if told.” He was right, Habakkuk could not believe what he was seeing. Instead of the Israelites being liberated from their oppressor, both they and the Assyrians would be taken by the Babylonians, a nation even more cruel. It would be out of the frying pan and into the fire.

God’s command in the midst of this was, “the righteous shall live by faith”. He was reminding Habakkuk to trust Him completely, especially when he didn’t understand what was happening.

We also can become confused with God’s apparent lack of action in helping our situation; instead of things getting better they go from bad to worse and we too cry out, “how long shall I cry for help and you will not hear?” But God does hear and He is always working His plan, it just might not be your plan. Trust Him and wait.

At the end of chapter 3 we see Habakkuk’s resolve:

Though the fig tree should not blossom, nor fruit be on the vines, the produce of the olive fail and the fields yield no food, the flock be cut off from the fold and there be no herd in the stalls, YET I will rejoice in the Lord, I will take joy in the God of my salvation. God, the Lord, is my strength.

Rejoicing in God through the hard times is a statement of faith and an act of worship to Him who is able to keep you from stumbling and to present you blameless before the presence of His glory with great joy.

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