Though the fig tree does not bud and there are no grapes on the vine, 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 Savior. The Sovereign Lord is my strength. He makes my feet like the feet of a deer. He enables me to go on the heights ( Habakkuk 3:17-19).
Trampling fields, stripping vineyards, the Chaldean army pillages, plunders, and consumes. When it is all over, Habakkuk trudges the land to assess the damage. I picture myself there, walking next to him, trying to understand, to feel what he feels.
The grizzled prophet keeps shaking his head in disbelief. When we come to the barn, he opens the door, enters, and then just stands for a long time listening to the quiet. “Oh Habakkuk,” I want to say. “Empty shelves, deserted streets, and eerie stillness have come to us too.”
The old man’s gaze moves from one stall to another. Is he picturing how things used to be? Is he wondering, like I have lately, “What is to become of us?”
Suddenly Habakkuk lifts his face heavenward and raises his arms. His voice rings against the bare walls, “Yet I will rejoice in the Lord! I will be joyful in God my Savior!”
Worship? In such circumstances? Yes! Habakkuk found the secret to coping with devastation, loss, and uncertainty. In the midst of worship he expresses unshakable faith—God will equip him to overcome! Surely with feet of a deer, he will not lose footing on the precarious heights of daunting challenges.
Nehemiah 8:10 says, “. . . the joy of the Lord is your strength.” When struck with bleak circumstances, this is how we prevail.
Sovereign Lord, in this world crisis we do not know what the future holds. Yet like Habakkuk, we will rejoice in You, our strength, our hope, and our salvation! Amen.
Published with Lifesprings International, 4/21/20.
I do love Habakkuk. Amen to “I will rejoice in the Lord” and “be joyful in God my Savior.”
Hi Ruth, your essay, “When All Seems Lost” is so beautifully and creatively written. If we could walk alongside Habakkuk in his day, and talk to him about how things are in our day, wouldn’t that be amazing? But we have Habakkuk’s words from God’s timeless Word, to encourage us to rejoice in God our Savior! Thank you, Ruth. I will share this with others! Blessings… Your sister in ink and in Christ, Kathy Ruckman (posted by Ruth Wood at Kathy’s request)