Although the fig tree shall not blossom, neither shall fruit be in the vines; the labour of the olive shall fail, and the fields shall yield no meat; the flock shall be cut off from the fold, and there shall be no herd in the stalls: Yet I will rejoice in the LORD, I will joy in the God of my salvation. Habakkuk 3:17-18
The olive was very important to people during Bible times. The berry, when pickled, was used in the relish put on bread for almost every meal. Almost every kind of dish was cooked in olive oil. It was very difficult to cook right without it. Olive oil was used in the lamps. The entire supply of soap was made from parts of the olive.
The worker left home in the early dawn with nothing more than olives wrapped up in a quantity of his paper-like loaves of bread. Most of his meals when away from home and at work were this type of meal.
Habukkuk says that even if there are no olives he will have joy in God. For there to be no olives would mean there would be almost no way to have a fire in the lamp. There would be little food prepared the way most was usually prepared. In fact, there would be little to eat because the olive was a part of almost every recipe. It would mean staying dirty because there would be no soap.
Habukkuk is stating that he will joy in the Lord no matter circumstance he finds himself living in. He can be hungry but he would be joyful for his salvation in God. He can be out of a job and dirty but he would rejoice that God loves him. He would follow God no matter what the situation is.
(Mark McWhorter , Copyright 2002, Published by The Old Paths Bible School, http://www.oldpaths.org)