Week 36 Friday

Roar and Refuge

Today’s scripture selection: Joel

Key verses: Joel 3:16

“The LORD will roar from Zion and thunder from Jerusalem; the earth and the heavens will tremble.  But the LORD will be a refuge for his people, a stronghold for the people of Israel.”

It’s all a matter of perspective.

If seen from the side of those who have opposed God – and tormented the people of Israel – the LORD’s visage is a frightening sight indeed.

One thinks of a savage lion or tiger; a ferocious beast of the jungle on a ravenous rampage or a devastating thunderstorm looming just over the horizon.

But seen from the side of those have been oppressed – the people who have suffered the injustice and pain of foreign enemies – God appears in a much different way.  Here, God is the rescue; the place of refuge; the long awaited hope.

And so we see the two sides of God.

Holy and righteous; just and formidable in judgment – yet compassionate and caring as well.

This doesn’t just have national ramifications – it has very real personal ones as well.

God is not to be taken lightly.  He is powerful; omnipotent; omnipresent; omniscient.  God is awesome in the best sense of that word.

But God is also the One in whom we can find rest and “peace that passeth all understanding.”

For some that is puzzling indeed.  But I find it very, very comforting.

Prayer: Almighty – and all loving God – I praise and thank you for being the truly awesome God you are.  AMEN.

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