The Great And Dreadful Day

A prayer of hope

Joel 2:23-32

O God, the earth shakes and the heavens split open. Everywhere we look we see blood and fire and columns of smoke. Our legs are like rubber, our hearts melt with fear. What has this world come to?

And yet, we rejoice.

We rejoice because our sons and daughters have prophesied the promise of the kingdom. They pour into the streets and declare a world without guns and violence. They rise up as martyrs to peace. They cross the oceans and and preach to us about the beauty and purpose of your creation.

We rejoice because our old men dream dreams. They wax poetic about a day when swords will be beaten into plowshares. They have dreamt of a future of hope rather than turn to pillars of salt, looking to what is behind them.

We rejoice because the young see visions. They look at what is around them, the very things that leave us quaking with fear, and they find the promise of Your goodness. They make plans to build rather than tear down. They make plans to grow rather than whither away. They make plans to live rather than die.

We rejoice because even those we have declared unworthy and pushed to the margins, You have plucked from the ashes. You have honored them with your Spirit. You have given them fire in their souls and in their words, so that they might change the world.

We rejoice because we know that when we call upon your name, you will save us. The fields will be lush with fruit, the storehouses overflowing with good things, and our cup will always be full.

We rejoice, even in the midst of fear and worry, because You are God. Amen.

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