Sunday, September 18, 2011

My olive oil was MIA

 17Though the fig tree should not blossom,
   nor fruit be on the vines,
the produce of the olive fail
   and the fields yield no food,
the flock be cut off from the fold
   and there be no herd in the stalls,
18 yet I will rejoice in the LORD;
    I will take joy in the God of my salvation.
19GOD, the Lord, is my strength;
   he makes my feet like the deer’s;
   he makes me tread on my high places
Habakkuk 3:17-19

Habakkuk has challenged my prayer life lately. Though my preference would be to expound upon those three verses for three weeks, I don't think that's wise seeing as I haven't blogged in a year and I'd be boring y'all to tears. Instead, I'm going to note those seven words that have struck my spiritual core: 
"Yet I will rejoice in the LORD"
I'm stubborn enough in my faith to believe God for the impossible;  I know He delights in it (Genesis 18:14, Jeremiah 32:17, Luke 1:37). On top of that, I'm learning to consistently ask Him to exceed my expectations when I believe those things for which I'm asking are in accordance with His purposes and glory in the church and in Christ (Ephesians 3:20-21). My intent is not to come before His throne in an over-confident manner, but I do believe we can approach it boldly, as a daughter who acknowledges her God's authority and power.

I'd like to call a recent season of mine "lack.' Not like Habakkuk's  where he experienced the depletion, failure and absence of those things which were life-giving to him. But a lack nonetheless. A little spiritual, emotional, relational, material vacancies of some things that caused me to walk through 'Lack.' Now if I'm in Lack, I'm bound and determined to not miss out on what God may have for me there. Perhaps Lack and I need to be friends so that I can know God to be my Provider. Or maybe I've got Lack because there is an area of sin in my life that has put up a wall between the blessing and favor of my Father, who may withhold  out of loving discipline until due time. Perhaps I'm bonding with Lack out of deep emotion over a loved one who is walking through a challenging season and I'm just not quite okay when they're not walking in the 'more' that I want so badly for them. So I've got some lack. The blossoms aren't there and the olive has failed to produce. And I'm not seeing the cattle and I even live in Nashville.

So one early morning, I prayed. I declared the promises of His 'Yes' over some things. I told the Lord how I knew He could deliver the impossible. By His grace, I truly did believe Him. I believed His Word. And I trusted His timing. I was all for whatever He wanted to do. And then I stopped my mouth long enough to listen and turned to my reading for the day.

And there, in those seven words, my spirit was stilled when I realized it wasn't more faith or perseverance that He was calling me to, but some joy. And not just a prim and proper clap of praise, but some serious celebrating. A flat out exultation in my God.

Not to ask Him for the 'more' I knew He could meet. Not to press in and let Him meet those 'needs' of mine. Not to believe by faith that those 'Yes' responses were mine in Christ.

And not that those aren't right. But I'd missed it. I was about to walk with 'Lack' as a martyr instead of a joyful child of God. Ain't right I tell you. Just ain't right.

Maybe each of those lacks have not been met yet. Maybe the circumstance hasn't changed. But, when I lift my gaze to the God who strengthens me, and He lifts me to tread on the high places, joy cometh. A little smile, a nod of who He is in the middle of the day and perhaps a flailing hand of praise in the middle of a jog. 

Choose joy in the God who never fails you. For the fruit may not yield. That person may disappoint you. The job interview may not come yet. The child may still be a prodigal. Or the dream may wait. But your God is One worth celebrating. You may be surprised to find that you, who are willed to do so, can still bear much fruit when that which around you is barren. The joy of the Lord is your strength (Nehemiah 8:10).


Big Jen said...

Very happy to hear from you my love.

Jordan Henson said...

Thank you so much for those encouraging words! I think several times my mouth actually fell open as I find myself challenged in many of the areas you mentioned. Shine that light girl!

Anonymous said...

This ministered to my heart SO much! Thank you for sharing. :)


Kelly S. said...


thank you for the encouraging words, finding your writing again (and sharing) has blessed me so much today!