Pastor Thomas Smith   -  

“Although the fig tree shall not blossom, neither shall fruit be in the vines; the labour of the olive shall fail, and the fields shall yield no meat; the flock shall be cut off from the fold, and there shall be no herd in the stalls: Yet I will rejoice in the LORD, I will joy in the God of my salvation.”¬†Habakkuk 3:17, 18

The word happiness is defined as being “favored by luck or fortune.” In other words, happiness is understood as being dependent upon circumstances or happenings. We all enjoy and appreciate it when circumstances are favorable and things are happening which are in our favor. It is easy to be happy when we have our health, our needs are met, and things seem to be going our way. However, Habakkuk speaks of a place of joy that is not the result of these things. He speaks of trees failing to blossom, vines being barren, fields yielding no fruit, flocks being lost, and yet being able to rejoice.

I think we all long for a place of constant joy that is not affected by every problem of life. There is no question about this; God wants our lives to be filled with joy. However, our rejoicing must be in something that is constant, not constantly changing. For instance, if we can only rejoice when the sun is shining, what shall we do on rainy days? If we can only find joy when we are feeling well, what are we to do when we are in pain? Circumstances will change, but some things never change. Our rejoicing can be consistent if we are finding joy in things that remain the same. Habakkuk says, “I will rejoice in the LORD, I will joy in the God of my salvation.” We can always rejoice in the Lord because He never changes. His character and attributes never change. God’s love for us is constant. His promises to us are unchanging.

Notice also that the prophet speaks of rejoicing in the “God of my salvation.” We can always rejoice in our salvation because this is also something that does not change. We can be joyful because our sins are forgiven and Heaven is our future home. Nothing can alter that. We can rejoice every day that God is our Father and Jesus is our Lord. The kind of rejoicing that we find in our text is not based on feelings or fortune, but it is the result of Bible faith. By faith, we can rejoice because of the blessings that are ours in Jesus Christ. Even when the way becomes difficult, through faith we are able to find reasons to rejoice.