Google+ 11/20/12 Really Habakkuk?

Habakkuk 3:17-19


Even though the fig trees have no blossoms, and there are no grapes on the vines;
Even though the olive crop fails,and the fields lie empty and barren;
Even though the flocks die in the fields, and the cattle barns are empty,
Yet I will rejoice in the LordI will be joyful in the God of my salvation!
The Sovereign Lord is my strength!
He makes me as surefooted as a deer, able to tread upon the heights.


God is such a powerful God! We need to commune with Him daily to understand everything He has in store for us. We need to understand the heart and mind of God. Only then, will we understand today's Scripture. I am going out on a limb this morning and to say that when you got out of bed this morning, you did not say "What a great day! I believe I will get my Bible out and read Habakkuk!" If this statement is true, then you are right there with me. God called me to this minor profit this morning in my prayer time. This book is very unique in prophetic literature. Habakkuk contains a high caliber of Hebrew poetry. The first two chapters constitute a dialog between the prophet and the Lord concerning the invasion of the Chaldeans and their destruction. Chapter 3 is a psalm with instructions given to the musicians for its rendering.  In the first two chapters, Habakkuk struggles with God and in the 3rd chapter he submits to God. Because of these instructions to the musicians, we can be sure that this "song" was used as a part of the regular temple liturgy. So what does our Scripture say to us today? After all, this Scripture was probably written between 655 B.C. and 602 B.C. Could it be relevant to us sitting here in the 21st century?  Like all Scripture, the resounding answer to this question is yes!  Habakkuk tells us that even when there appears to be no blossoms, fruit, or harvest, we should "Rejoice in the Lord!" Even when the fields lay empty, flocks die, and cattle barns are barren, we should be "joyful in the God of my salvation." Wait a minute. Stop the presses. We should rejoice in the Lord when nothing seems to be working?  We should be joyful in the God of our salvation when our fields are bare and our barns are empty? Absolutely! The Scripture says especially then. This is the time the devil will work on us to tell us God really isn't God. Satan will take this opportunity to say, "See, your God has abandoned you. You are alone and you are not loved. Come follow me and I will give you the riches of the earth." That's what Satan did to Jesus. That's what Satan will do to us. Pardon my technical, scientific reference here, but it needs to be said. The joy of the Lord causes the body to produce large amounts of endorphins and serotonin. This causes us to be more awake and generally more productive in everything we do. Conversely, the lack of joy causes endorphins to not be produced and melatonin to be released instead. This is the chemical in the body that makes us sleepy and feeling like we don't want to do anything. It can and does contribute, as a symptom, to us being confused and sometimes feeling depressed. So, when should we strive to be the most joyful in the Lord? The answer is when things are the worst in our lives. I would suggest that it is easy for us to be joyful when things are going well in our lives. What sets Christians apart from the followers of the dark side, is our ability to let God's love shine through in our darkest hour. When your fields look bare when you were expecting a harvest, sing your song of joy to God. When your barns are empty, praise Jesus for your salvation. When Satan says "Everyone hates you," sing "I Love You Lord" as many times as it takes to hear God's voice say "I love you, too!"  When we do this, God will make us as surefooted as a deer and able to tread upon the heights. Our God is an awesome God in good times and in bad. Praise Ye the Lord!