Fig trees may no longer bloom, or vineyards produce grapes; olive trees may be fruitless, and harvest time a failure; sheep pens may be empty, and cattle stalls vacant — but I will still celebrate because the Lord God saves me.
Habakkuk 3:17-18 Contemporary English Version (CEV)
The Apostle Paul tells us in God's Word that we are to "rejoice in the Lord always" and in case we don't get it the first time, he repeats it: "And again I say rejoice!" (Philippians 4:4) This is one of my favorite verses of Scripture because it reminds me that God is in control no matter how dark things seem sometimes. To rejoice makes me lift my head and look up. I focus on the faithfulness of the Lord and remember how He has worked everything out for my good and I give Him praise.
We all go up and down in our joy. There are times when things are going so well we cannot imagine being unhappy ever again. Then times come when life looks so bleak that we lose hope of ever experiencing joy again. This is not God's will for our lives. He desires that we celebrate Him all of the time. He promises new mercy and joy every morning. He wants us to trust that He is working through even the hard times for our good and His glory. If we never know loss, we have nothing to compare to gain. If we never know bad times, we cannot truly gauge the good times. We cannot miss what we cannot measure.
To count it ALL joy takes faith that the sovereign God who loves us rules over everything. When things are not going as we would like in our lives, we can be confident that all will turn out well as we trust and believe in the Most High God through His Son, Jesus Christ, who saved us. Nothing is too hard for Him!