Habakkuk 3:17-18 – 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. (NIV)
Most times, I find it very hard to be joyful when I'm depressed. Does that sound like an oxymoron to you?
I don't mean the outward expression of joy, but the joy that comes from having the living God live in us. When our pain is emotional, it complicates things, and very often that joy is masked and results in depression.
What kinds of things make us joyful? Beautiful spring days, a smiling baby, or a good book waiting to be read. The problem with these and other similar things is that they are temporary fixes! There is only One Who stays constant in our lives: "the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows." (James 1:17 NIV)
Do we rejoice only when we see the manifestation of our Lord in our lives? If so, we are missing out on the most wonderful part of our Christianity.
2 Corinthians 4:11 – For we who are alive are always being given over to death for Jesus' sake, so that his life may be revealed in our mortal body. (NIV)
The miracle is this: that His life may be revealed in our mortal body.
Our lives are not to be lived for our own pleasure. It is the glory of Christ that we hope to let the world see. Regardless of how we feel, Christ is as alive in us as He always was — not more one day and less another. He is alive completely in us each and every day. No matter our circumstances, or our physical condition, or our mental state, He is 100% alive in us.
Prayer: Lord, we pray that we will be able to draw on the life of Jesus each day. Though the fig tree does not bud, we pray that the joy of our Lord will burst forth in our lives. This we pray in Jesus' name. Amen.