It has been a long and difficult COVID pandemic season. A season that has affected a tremendous number of people across our globe. A season that has caused much grief and suffering. A season of fear and worry. A season that seems to have no end. And a season that may have tested your faith.
COVID-19 has affected everyone in some way. Whether it’s a lack of contact with other people, added stress at work, loss of loved ones, or trying to help children stuck at home on Distance Learning, we have all taken a hit to our emotional health. It is very important for us to somehow find joy despite these difficult circumstances. But where can joy be found in the most desperate of circumstances?
Habakkuk watched his people going through difficult times with many evil and unfair things going on, so he questioned why God would tolerate or even allow it. God’s answer in Habakkuk 1:5 was “Look at the nations and watch and be utterly amazed. For I am going to do something in your days that you would not believe. Basically, God is telling Habakkuk to just watch and see what He is doing. I truly believe God sends blessings that we don’t recognize because our focus is in the wrong place. When we can turn our focus from the difficult circumstances to seeking God, we will be more likely to recognize those blessings and experience joy.
Habakkuk still had questions for God, but in the end, he chose to trust God and have faith despite the situation. In a prayer, he says, “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” (Habakkuk 3:17-18). No matter how bad things became, Habakkuk was determined to rejoice and find joy in God. Even though things seemed to be falling apart, Habakkuk chose to trust God and rejoice in Him.
Some people seem to always look on the bright side of things. No matter how difficult life gets or what comes their way, they have hope and faith. Habakkuk seems to have learned that hope comes from trusting in God. Trust comes from rejoicing in God our Savior and what He has done in the past and can do in the future instead of grumbling about the current difficulties. Faith comes from focusing on Him rather than the loss or the lack of certain things.
We are in a desperate situation, and many have questions just like Habakkuk. It’s important for us to remember God’s answer to Habakkuk and trust that God is working in ways we are unable to see at the moment. Despite a pandemic, we can find joy through faith and trust in God. May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit (Romans 15:13).