The Lord thunders at the head of his army; his forces are beyond number, and mighty is the army that obeys his command. The day of the Lord is great; it is dreadful. Who can endure it? - Joel 2:11
This week we dig into the book of Joel. It is a short book of 3 poems by “Joel son of Pethuel” and many scholars today still debate when it was written since it has almost no historical context. The poems describe the power of God, in the context of the judgment of Israel, which we have read about in previous books, and also at the final judgment of the world. They give us a feel for who our God is in relation to humanity.
When I think of the power of God, I think of a retreat I went on some years ago at Caritas in Birmingham, AL. As part of the day's schedule, our group of around 50 pilgrims went on a 3 hour round trip hike up a nearby mountain for a time of quiet prayer and reflection at the summit. We had only been there for 10 minutes out of the planned hour when we saw flashes in the distance, an approaching thunderstorm. Everyone packed back up and prayed our way back down the trail as the sun set. The trail ended in an open field where there is a huge lone pine tree, a very significant gathering place on the property.
Not content to end the day, I knelt down with a few friends I had grown close to while on retreat and we started to pray under the tree. As we prayed, the storm hit, sweeping into the field with rain, wind, lightning and thunder. I remember one of the ladies asking if it was safe to be out and me responding that getting struck by lightning while praying would be a heck of a way to meet God. After the storm passed I thanked God for the humbling experience of His power through nature. We have an awesome God who is the ruler of ALL!
Daily Battle Order:
Today think back to a time where you were awestruck by God’s power in a way that deepened your faith. Thank Him for the experience and acknowledge today that he is your King, the sovereign ruler or creation!