Do we have times when we find we have to praise God although the times are tough? I received a phone call from my friend who lives in Virginia; she has lost a nephew to Cancer. She also has a brother who, depending on the state of his lungs, may be having open heart surgery this week.
“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 be 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.”
Habakkuk 3:17-18 (NIV)
Habakkuk prayed that he would rejoice in the Lord under the most devastating times. How many of us could pray that prayer? I know my friend would have a hard time with it.
Could we imagine what our land would look like if we had no fruit trees budding? In the Midwest we would have no cherries, apples, or peaches.
My husband grew up in a farming community. What would it look like if the soy beans, wheat, and corn didn’t germinate? I believe it would look pretty bleak-for the farmers and for the consumers.
We know some young people who have raised sheep as a part of their 4H projects. Every year the county fair has an auction of the animals the youth have tended. But what if there were no animals- sheep, cows, swine or chickens?
Habakkuk painted a bleak forlorn picture of Judah. His thinking is that if all the things deemed vital to their well being no longer existed, he would still feel bound to give thanks to God.
Under those circumstances what would Habakkuk, or even we, find in our lives under for which we could praise God?
1.) God is present with us in such difficult times.
2.) He will guide us through travails such as drought and loss of income.
3.) He will fellowship with us as we pray to Him.
4.) Our Lord will encourage us as we worship Him.
Please allow us to praise You whatever our circumstances in life. We ask You to accept our thanks for Your presence as we go through tough times. Please show us how to continue to praise You in the hard times. We will give You thanks for everything You have done for us. In the name of Jesus, we pray. AMEN.