Sitting in the back pew

17Though 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,
18 yet I will rejoice in the Lord;
I will take joy in the God of my salvation.
19 God, the Lord, is my strength;
he makes my feet like the deer’s;
he makes me tread on my high places.
— Habakkuk 3:17-19

I read this passage today during service on my own. I opened to this book of the Bible and this closing passage was underlined from a previous reading. I had forgotten all about it, so reading it again was like discovering a $20 bill in your pocket. What contentment the prophet Habakkuk had even as the Lord Himself was raising up the Chaldeans (“a bitter and hasty nation”) against the Israelites. In the midst of coming injustice, wickedness, violence, and oppression, Habakkuk rejoices in God after asking him for mercy (3:2).

There are times at YKC when there is no fruit, no yield, no flock…and it discourages and saddens me. But Habakkuk’s response in the face of all this would not be perpetual sadness. No, in spite of this, “I will rejoice in the Lord; I will take joy in the God of my salvation. God the Lord, is my strength.”

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