Habakkuk 3:17-18 (NIV): “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 are 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.”

Are you familiar with Solomon’s quote from Ecclesiastes? “The thing that hath been, it is that which shall be and that which is done is that which shall be done: and there is no new thing under the sun.”

Oftentimes I feel like a repeater, sharing what I’ve seen, learned or heard from someone else.

I am certain many others are like me trying to figure out or trying to make sense of the changes not only upon our nation but on the larger scope of the world stage.

Which is what has drawn me to the passage of Habakkuk.

The prophet Habakkuk, born six centuries before Christ in a time of struggle with injustices of the Chaldean regime over the Jews.

He lived in a day of violence and apostasy. A pandemic parade of injustice marched past Habakkuk’s ministry.

Sounds, or has a familiar ring to it.

As I reread the closing verse of Habakkuk 3:18, which says, “Yet, I will rejoice in the Lord. I will be joyful in God my Savior.”

When people fill a stadium and become excited, even ecstatic, in their enthusiasm over a sporting event, we see that as normal. Yet when someone expresses that same kind of enthusiasm, that kind of excitement about faith in God, they’re called a fanatic.

I can’t help but remember the men’s revival moment called “Promise Keepers” in the ’90s, which was an answer to the “What if?” asked by Christian men.

“What if we could fill the stadiums with men excited about faith like they do for sports events.”

I attended a couple in Seattle and in California. It definitely was exciting to be a part of.

The question was answered by action in the 1990s. Naturally, it doesn’t have the numbers it had in the ’90s. The current push is for revival in or by 2025.

I remember there was a kind of a spin off called “Storm the Gates.”

I guess my encouragement for others and myself is, “Rejoice in the Lord.”

The Hebrew word translated “rejoice” means “exalt.” It doesn’t mean jump and shout when you’re hurting. But it’s an encouragement to focus. When we are climbing out of the valley of despair, we must not lose our focus on God. We must keep our eyes fixed on our Christian life in Christ Jesus: Focus up, my friend!

 

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