Although the fig tree shall not blossom, neither shall fruit be in the vines; the labour of the olive shall fail, and the fields shall yield no meat; the flock shall be cut off from the fold, and there shall be no herd in the stalls: Yet I will rejoice in the Lord, I will joy in the God of my salvation. –Habakkuk 3:17, 18
While happiness is momentary and fleeting, joy persists and endures. God wants us to be happy, but more importantly, He wants us to be joyful. To have that unshakable faith in His providence, true contentment in any circumstance, and a peace that passes all understanding is to have – no, be – joyful.
Read the verse above again. In all situations, we are called to give thanks and have joy. That doesn’t mean we can’t ever be angry, sad, or frustrated, but having joy does mean that we will choose to respond to those feelings differently, in a more Christ-like manner.
When we have joy, when we are full of joy, we share with others an aspect of our Lord that many need to see and understand. When we are joyful, we impart hope. God brings hope to the hopeless and rest for the weary.
We may be facing trials and tribulations at this very moment, but we can ask the Lord to increase our faith and give us joy down in our hearts in such a way that no one or anything could take them away from us. “Weeping may endure for the night, but joy comes in the morning” (Ps. 30:5b).
“Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, in everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you” (1 Thess. 5:16-18).
Praise God for the joy that is found in His presence and in following Him.
Praise God that we can rejoice in our infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon us.
Pray that God will give you joy in your heart.
Pray for someone who needs God’s joy in their heart.
Pray that God will teach you to rejoice in trials. If you have a situation in mind, present it to Him.
Pray for those who are persecuted, asking that God will give them joy in their hearts.
Pray for the young people of the church, that they may find joy in following Christ.
Pray for increased emphasis on the wonderful doctrine of biblical creation – that our earth was created in six literal, consecutive days by the word of the Lord.
Pray for any personal needs or anything else on your heart.
Praise God that He already has an answer to your prayer.
May you be blessed!