A Call to Action
Joel 3:9-11 (NKJV)
9 Proclaim this among the nations:
“Prepare for war!
Wake up the mighty men,
Let all the men of war draw near,
Let them come up.
10 Beat your plowshares into swords
And your pruning hooks into spears;
Let the weak say, ‘I am strong.’”
11 Assemble and come, all you nations,
And gather together all around.
Cause Your mighty ones to go down there, O Lord.
This is the ultimate call to me. Every time I read this passage, it reminds me to take what I have right now and use it for what I am called to do in that moment. Sometimes we lose focus of that. Sometimes we think we aren’t prepared, or don’t have everything we need, or some other excuse we use to hold us back. But God calls us to use what we have now to do what He is calling is to do now. Not when convenient or when the stars align.
This passage, of course, is talking about war. In this instance, He is telling the Children of Israel to take what they have and prepare for war. They were farmers, and as such, the tools of their trade were plowshares and pruning hooks. But God is calling them to war. The Children of Israel could have easily said to themselves; “How can we go to war? We have no weapons!” But God told them to take what they have—the tools of their trade—and fashion from it the provision for what He was calling them to do. We can do the same when God calls us.
No doubt the Children of Israel were scared. It is for this reason He calls them mighty men, telling them to wake up, and proclaiming to those that see themselves as weak to declare that they are strong. You are strong!
Often when God calls us to do something, we become scared because we think we cannot do it alone. And indeed, we can’t. But notice He called the Children of Israel to assemble and gather together. You are not alone when He has called you to do something. He is calling others to accomplish His purpose just like He is calling you.
There is no such thing as a maverick Christian; we are all in this together. No purpose He gives to us is for us only, for He is a communal God. Everything He calls us to is bigger than us. Whether He is calling an army to war, or a teacher to lead a Sunday School class, you are not alone.
His timing is perfect. If He reveals something to us, it is for that time. When provision is needed, He will provide it. We cannot allow our fears or our insecurities or lack of credentials or provisions or education to hold us back. When He calls, it is for that time. We will not have forever to accomplish what He has called us to do today.