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 Lord! I will be joyful in the God of my salvation!
- Habakkuk 3:17-18
I’m one of those crazy cat lady people. My oldest cat is my baby. I may or may not spoil her a little too much and smother her with too many kisses.
I remember one time we were having a really bad snowstorm that was supposed to dump several inches of snow on us overnight. When it started to get really bad, I made my cat stay inside. She kept jumping from my arms and standing in front of the door, meowing as loud as she possibly could. She was angry with me that I was keeping her inside when she clearly wanted out.
I tried to give her treats and talk soothingly to calm her down, but she was determined that she wanted outside and wanted nothing to do with me, because I was the one preventing her from what she really wanted.
I still refused to let her back out. Because I could see what she clearly couldn’t. I could see the snow falling. I could see the dangers of her being outside, when she couldn’t.
Sometimes I ponder this. Could our broken dreams be God’s way of doing the same thing for us? Maybe when God is keeping us from what we think we want, He’s really protecting us from what we know nothing about?
Last year I had a dream that I fought really hard for. It was a good dream, and I wanted it more than anything. It was something I’d been planning and hoping for, something I even wanted to glorify God with.
But then the door closed. The dream shattered.
And I was left standing there in front of the door, crying out to God. I felt like my cat must have in that moment. Why, God, would You keep me from what I want? Why would You not answer my prayer the way I wanted when what I want is good?
And I can almost feel God gently holding me and reminding me that perhaps I couldn’t see the snow falling outside. I wasn’t seeing the whole picture like He could. Will you trust Me, even though you don’t see? He was asking.
That’s what I love about this verse above. Even though the fig trees have no blossoms...yet I will rejoice in the Lord.
I’m not rejoicing because I understand. I’m not rejoicing because life isn’t hard, or because dreams don’t die. No; I’m rejoicing because my God is good. His plans for me are good, and His love for me is so good. And that’s how I can rejoice, even though I don’t always see the answers to my questions.
Because sometimes the only answer is that God is good and He can see the snow falling when I can’t. And that’s enough.
1. Do you sometimes wonder why God answers a prayer differently than you asked for?
2. What are some ways that you can rejoice in His goodness today, even when you don’t understand?
Jesus, thank You for loving me and wanting what’s best for me always. Thank You for being good, even if my circumstances don’t feel good. Help me to trust You and rejoice in You, no matter what. In Jesus’ Name, amen.
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