Pause

The human struggle is often about finding a safe, secure place and then having a sense that one's life is worthwhile, productive.

So, where to find that safety? And how do you come to know that life is worth living?

The best place to start is at the source, in the presence of the Creator.

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Listen

I will show portents in the heavens and on the earth, blood and fire and columns of smoke. The sun shall be turned to darkness, and the moon to blood, before the great and terrible day of the Lord comes. Then everyone who calls on the name of the Lord shall be saved; for in Mount Zion and in Jerusalem there shall be those who escape, as the Lord has said, and among the survivors shall be those whom the Lord calls.

Joel 2:30-32

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Think

In the 1998 film Deep Impact, a meteorite is set to strike the earth in less than 30 days. Only those people allowed into the shelters will survive. Who will survive, and who gets to decide?

In today’s Scripture text, Joel describes a different version of the apocalypse. However, the good news is that humanity doesn’t have to fight over who gets to live.

In Joel, as well as in the New Testament, everyone who calls upon the name of the Lord will be saved, in this life and the next. God tells us that the evils of this world will be destroyed, but God loves humanity so much that it is God’s will that we all be saved.

Thanks be to God.

Tracy Hartman

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Pray

God, in the chaos of our world, it is easy to forget that you love me enough to want me to live with you forever. I confess that sometimes it is easy to see being saved as “fire insurance” against the apocalypse. Instead, help me to live each day in love and gratitude to you, and in compassion towards others, so that they too will be drawn to your love and grace. Amen.

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Go

As we work together with him, we urge you also not to accept the grace of God in vain. For he says,

“At an acceptable time I have listened to you,
and on a day of salvation I have helped you.”

See, now is the acceptable time; see, now is the day of salvation!

2 Corinthians 6:1-2

Tracy Hartman

Tracy Hartman is a professor of practical theology and homiletics at Baptist Theological Seminary at Richmond. Tracy loves to hike and camp and is an avid knitter and quilter.

Let All Mortal Flesh Keep Silent

Ken Medema

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