What is your favorite summer vacation destination? We plan that much-anticipated trip to the beach and we can almost smell the salt from the ocean waves and feel the soft and beneath our feet. The rest we came for is reflected in the beautiful sunsets that bring each day to a close. Or we may prefer the cool woodsy smell as we sit on the porch of a cabin tucked into the side of a mountain. We feel the stress fade as we retreat from the noise and busyness of our daily life and refresh ourselves with the quiet that surrounds the beauty of God’s creation.
These places always overwhelm me with the reality of God’s presence and His power and might. Let’s use the imagery of our favorite summertime destinations to prompt us to praise God as the One who is mighty and powerful! If you happen to be venturing to any of these locations this summer on vacation, use God’s creation to prompt you to praise Him!
I am the Lord your God, who stirs up the sea so that its waves roar— the Lord of hosts is his name. —Isaiah 51:15
The Lord of Hosts is an interesting and powerful name of God for us to understand. Read the verse from Psalm 46 below. I’ve given it to you in a few different translations.
The Lord of Hosts is with us. —Psalm 46:7a (ESV)
The Lord All Powerful is with us. —Psalm 46:7a (CEV)
The Lord Almighty is with us. —Psalm 46:7a (NIV)
Now take a moment to read through all of Psalm 46. The Lord of Hosts is His name, Jehovah Sabaoth, meaning to wage war or muster into service. It reflects God’s power and omnipotence (all-powerful). Life often feels like a battle, whether it be physical, mental, emotional or spiritual. Psalm 46 gives us some powerful imagery — the earth giving way, mountains carried into the midst of the sea, waters roaring and foaming, mountains trembling, nations raging and kingdoms tottering. We can take comfort and courage in the fact that our God is over all! He is the Lord of Hosts, All-Powerful, Almighty and in the midst of it all—He is with us! Psalm 46:10 encourages us to be still and know that He IS God! Look at some definitions from this verse in the original language:
Be still – râp̱âh – to relax, sink down, let drop, to be quiet.
Know – yāḏa‘ – to know, consider, confess, to experience.
In other words, consider how mighty God is and cease being discouraged and disheartened. Relax, get quiet and know —consider, perceive and experience— His presence. Know that He is the all-powerful One who controls all the roaring, shaking, raging and tottering. The Lord of Hosts is fighting for us! The Lord of Hosts is with us. Did you catch the first line in our verse for today, “I am the Lord your God”. He is your God. That’s personal! Yes, He controls the winds and waves and sustains our world by His might power. But He is also our refuge and our strength, a very present help in trouble. When my heart and flesh are failing, He is my strength and my portion (Ps 73:26).
When you go out to war against your enemies, and see horses and chariots and an army larger than your own, you shall not be afraid of them, for the Lord your God is with you, who brought you up out of the land of Egypt. And when you draw near to the battle, the priest shall come forward and speak to the people and shall say to them, ‘ Hear, O Israel, today you are drawing near for battle against your enemies: let not your heart faint. Do not fear or panic or be in dread of them, for the Lord your God is he who goes with you to fight for you against your enemies, to give you the victory. —Deuteronomy 20:1-4
Thus says the Lord, who gives the sun for light by day and the fixed order of the moon and the stars for light by night, who stirs up the sea so that its waves roar — the Lord of hosts is his name… —Jeremiah 31:35
Remember today that He is with us!
Spend some time reflecting on the verses from today and on the truth that God is the Lord of Hosts, Almighty and All-Powerful. In what area of your life do you need to know and trust God as the Almighty, All-Powerful One? Are you fighting a battle today and find yourself weary and worn? Call out to Him. He is with you!
It’s my prayer that through this series we will, “from the rising of the sun to its setting”, focus on our amazing God. We’ll take the Word for the day and think about it, ponder it, pray it and practice it. We’ll allow it to really SOAK into our hearts and lives. And then we’ll SHINE — boast, rave, praise and celebrate God’s presence in our lives, reflecting Jesus to those around us.
(I am grateful to my Mama, Suella Jones for her editing skills and writing gift in today’s introduction.)
©2014 Susan Cady, susancady.com