Comfort (Habakkuk 3:17-18)

Though the fig tree should not blossom
And there be no fruit on the vines;
The yield of the olive should fail
And the fields produce no food,
Though the flock should be cut off from the fold
And there be no cattle in the stalls,
Yet I will exult in the LORD,
I will rejoice in the God of my salvation.

Habakkuk 3:17-18

The prophet here runs down a list of the extras in life. The staple food of ancient Israel was bread and the vital drink clean water. Those are the basics of life. What Habakkuk speaks of — figs, grapes, olives, cattle — are the luxury items; the things that make life pleasanter to live. He states that even if the little luxuries; the creature comforts are removed he will still exult (jump for joy) and rejoice (make a loud, happy noise) in the LORD … the God of my salvation. He goes so far as to say that if the fields produce no food, he will still be excited about what God is up to.

Can I say the same? I live in a nation where creature comforts are commonplace. I have air conditioning (thank God for it) and plenty of food options (so much so that I need to be careful of my weight) and more clothing than I need (you know you have more than you need when you have to decide what to wear) and the list just keeps going. I have an abundance. If God were to strip me of that abundance and leave me with only the bare essentials, would I still praise Him? If I could no longer afford the little luxuries that I enjoy, would I continue to get up early and spend time reading and thinking on God’s Word? If even my daily bread became questionable, would I trust Him? For many in the world, those are not hypothetical questions, but their day-to-day reality. While I am concerned with one set of things, my brethren throughout the world are concerned with other things entirely.

Let me decide that I will praise God no matter what He does. As Job said, “The LORD gave and the LORD has taken away. Blessed be the Name of the LORD.” Let me resolve to be excited about what God is doing, regardless of whether it is pleasant to me. For I know that all things work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to His purpose. Let me, like Habakkuk, determine to be excited about God’s doings and to praise Him whether or not I am comfortable. God never once promised me creature comforts, but He has promised comfort in my afflictions.


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