“yet I will rejoice in the Lord; I will take joy in the God of my salvation.” Habakkuk 3:18
I was having a very bad day. This was one day last week. I had to go to my office last weekend on Sunday because there was a hurricane coming on Monday and we would not be working and there was something that had to be done. On my way home I heard a rock hit a window and I looked all over my windshield and the car windows, including my sunroof and did not see anything, no rock chips, nothing. So on Tuesday morning I get in the car and my sunroof was shattered. It was still holding together but it was obvious it would have to be replaced. Not knowing if it would hold together or not, I closed the panel on the inside and headed to work. On my way to work I began to hear glass falling on the panel and I knew I would have to turn around and take my car home to sit under a covering until I could get it fixed. Now I know that a busted sunroof is nothing to necessarily cry about. But you know how on some days that one thing can happen that just might push you over the edge. This had the potential to be a one thing pushing me. I didn’t cry over it, but I did feel I was teetering on the edge.
On my way back to work, in my husband’s truck, I felt myself teetering so I began saying out loud “Lord I am so grateful that my joy is not tied up in a sunroof!” After I said that one it set me going I began to out loud say to the Lord, “Lord I am grateful that my joy is not tied up in hurricanes!” “Lord I am grateful that my joy is not tied up in my work.” “Lord, I am grateful that my joy is not tied up in my children, and whether they are doing or acting like I think they should.” “Lord I am grateful my joy is not tied up in my finances” I did this all the way back to work for about 15 minutes or so. And you know what, by the time I drove up at work I could honestly say “Lord I am grateful my joy is tied up in YOU!”
You see the point is this, some days are bad days, some years are bad years and some seasons of life are hard seasons, but if you belong to Him, we get to choose joy! This verse is actually part of a passage by the prophet Habakkuk. Habakkuk is never considered a particularly happy book to study. However, this prophet, even though he was prophesying the coming judgement of Judah still knew how to put his faith, trust and joy in God. The book itself is only three chapters, and while you see his complaining and crying out to God, he ends it with a prayer and a declaration that his joy is not in circumstances but in God. This is his declaration.
“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; he makes my feet like the deer’s he makes me tread on my high places. Habakkuk 3:17-19
Habakkuk wasn’t looking at his circumstances to bring him joy. He claimed joy in the Lord in spite of his circumstances. Sometimes we have to reach out and claim the joy because the circumstances surrounding us just aren’t cutting it. Won’t you do that with me today. Won’t you name a few things that you are grateful are not the source of your joy and then tell Him how grateful you are that your joy is in Him not in your circumstances.