I always choose a word for myself at the start of a new year. A word to meditate and focus on, especially during my quiet times with God. One year, through prayer, I felt like “resilience” was the word for me. I’ve never thought of myself as truly resilient; in fact, the fear of not being able to control a situation often brings me to the point of wanting to throw in the towel and give up. Little did I know this word would illustrate a pivotal wilderness season in my life as the year went on. 

If I were to compare my life that year to a character in the Bible, it would be Habakkuk. Most people don’t know who he was or his story. A minor prophet, this book of the Bible is often glossed over. 

“O Lord, how long shall I cry for help, and you will not hear? Or cry to you “Violence!” and you will not save?” (Habakkuk 1:2)

This short book of the Bible is simply a desperate dialogue between Habakkuk and God. He is perplexed, tired, confused, and sick of waiting. He’s constantly asking why God is silent. I think we can all relate to a season, circumstance, or relationship in our lives that feels similar. That year, a lot of things happened that did not necessarily have the outcome I was hoping for. And more often than not, I didn’t receive the closure I thought I needed. That’s until I realized the work Jesus was doing on my heart was more important than the circumstances I was so desperately seeking to control.  He was building resilience within me.  

The Call to Rejoice

See, as Christians we are called to rejoice – even in trials. But since this goes against the way our human brains are wired, it takes an intentional perspective shift to get our minds aligned with what we’re called to do. What if we were to stop allowing our emotions to dictate our thoughts, but rather let our renewed thoughts influence our emotions? 

The world is screaming at us to indulge in self-pity, deplete our joy through comparison, and mask our pain with substances. What God has mandated is harder than all of that; to genuinely rejoice because HE is good. It takes the focus off our circumstances and onto His character. 

I slowly began to realize that it’s not about God giving us an answer to the “why’s” in life (for instance, “why am I still single?” or “why do I have to wait for this breakthrough?”). Instead we must rejoice in faith, believing that He wants to give us our desires more than we want them. And that His desires for us are even greater than what we think we want.

It’s hard to grasp that.

The Call to Wait

Our human trajectory is not even on the same plane as God’s. We are on an X/Y axis and He is on a different dimension with His own timing.

God reminded Habakkuk similarly of this call to wait patiently: 

“For still the vision awaits its appointed time;

it hastens to the end—it will not lie.

If it seems slow, wait for it;

it will surely come; it will not delay.”

(Habakkuk 2:3) 

I’m almost positive that all the outward pressure he felt was invoking inward transformation. 

Resilience: the Harder Choice

When we recall the character of our loving God we remember that He is constant. He is our fortress. He is the giver of good gifts. His timing is perfect. He is faithful. He is true. He is our champion. He is our defender. He is our security. He is our advocate. He is just. He provides vindication. He is the only solid answer we need.

Choosing to rejoice in these truths is resilience. Because it’s the harder choice, but that’s what we are called to do.

Sister, you are chosen. When man says no, God is saying yes. We have been set apart and chosen by a God who picked us up out of darkness and sanctified us to Him, thanks to His Son’s glorious sacrifice, to live a life destined for greatness. 

I wish I could tell you all of those prayers I prayed and circumstances I was going through all came to a perfect, happy ending. Instead, I am still waiting. Some chapters of my journey did not receive the closure I felt entitled to. Others are still floating in limbo. Yet, I rejoice. He has revealed so many of His promises and faithfulness through this process. 

A Changed Mindset

We see Habakkuk expressing a truly surrendered heart at the end of the book. Nothing has changed in regards to his circumstances, but his mindset has. He beautifully states in the closing verses: 

“Though the fig tree should not blossom, nor fruit be on the vines, the produce of the olive fail and the fields yield no food… yet I will rejoice in the Lord; I will take joy in the God of my salvation.  God, the Lord, is my strength.” Hab. 3:17-19

What challenging circumstances are you walking through?  

What new mindset shifts do you need to align with?  

May we choose joy and resilience in every moment dear friend because His ways are perfect and His word is flawless. 

“And the Lord will guide you continually and satisfy your desire in scorched places and make your bones strong; and you shall be like a watered garden, like a spring of water, whose waters do not fail.” Isaiah 58:11