Read Joel 2:21-27. What stood out to you in this reading of the text?
I share your feelings, Amy. When I see the wildfires and the floods and the destructive weather in patterns like we've neve seen before, I think, "We have done this." I hope we can come together as a planet of people to institute positive changes.
And, we can pray. I need to remind myself that God created it all in the first place.
Yes, we must rejoice in God's restoration of his creation. God's provision is abundant. But... we (Americans) must remember not to take more than our fair share.
I know I'm feeling discouraged today, thinking about the harm we humans have done to God's creation. Thank you, Ellen and Gina, for your inspiring words. Your posts to the forum always lift me up.
In the Message, there is an interesting twist to verses 23-24. It says, "He's giving you a teacher to train you how to live right - Teaching, like rain out of heaven, showers of words to refresh and nourish your soul, just as he used to do." I am reminded of John's birth narrative, "In the beginning was the Word and the Word was with God and the Word was God. In Him was life and the life was the light of men." Joel talked about restoration and, for the most part, restoration of the earth and God's people, Israel. But I also like the idea of God showering us with words, restorative words, and the prophecy of the teacher to come to do just that. So have faith, rejoice, God will restore the earth, his people and each one of us.
Thank you for that uplifting insight, Gina! God showering us sounds like it has to be good, doesn't it?!
As soon as I read your quote from the beginning of the Gospel of John, I thought of Pastor Jason's sermon about "the Word" and all the different things that can mean.
I am very grateful to have access to so many thoughtful interpretations and discussions about the scriptures.
May it be so.
Thank you, Ellen, for your faithfulness to this ministry over the past (almost 40) days. All of the comments shared here in community have blessed me.
Oh, my goodness, Angela Finet! THE Angela Finet!! The esteemed author of the devotional booklet is here in our discussion!! WOW!! I had no idea you were following our posts. What an honor! Thank you so much for your words of validation and encouragement--both here and in the booklet!
In the Bible verses, I was struck by the promise of restoration, not just to the people, but also to animals and gardens. I am reminded of God’s attention to the details in all life.
In the devotional booklet, the author mentions the devastation and destruction that Joel’s people were facing from droughts and swarms of locusts. Yet, while those things were still happening, Joel spoke of God’s being faithful and of His promise to restore. Joel’s words offered hope.
In our time, people are weary of the pandemic and the limitations and shortages it has brought. Many are grieving in the wake of its destruction. Wildfires and horrific storms have left countless people homeless and without necessities. I think we can sense a kinship with the people of Joel’s time.
I want to apply the promises from Joel to our time. Is that taking things out of context, or is that a good thing to do?
I’m looking forward to living verse 26:
“You shall eat in plenty and be satisfied,
and praise the name of the Lord your God,
who has dealt wondrously with you.
And my people shall never again be put to shame.”