Happy New Year’s! 

Todd and I had a great time bringing in the new year with our friends Steve and Brenda Rice, along with two of their new friends Nat and Elain.  Steve and Brenda are two of the most amazing friends you could ask for.  We have great talks about God, we pray for each other, we pray for each other’s kids and then we have lots of laughs together too.  It’s a balanced friendship!  Last night we introduced Elain to Sequence, one of our favorite board games.   We had a blast, did I mention that the two girls’ teams won 2 games each and the guys not even one??? Oh ya, I said it! 🙂

While we were playing Sequence we heard fireworks going off outside as people celebrated New Year’s.  That one little incident caused me to change my blog schedule.  I had this devotion SOUND THE ALARM in my ideas folder for later this year, but felt that nudge from Holy Spirit that it needed to be sent out today.  I pray that this devotion gets you ready for all that God has for you in 2017.

I believe it’s greatly by your choices; how you act and react in this new year that will decide the course for your life.  May you choose the life God has destined for you and walk in His blessings this year!

Much love,
~Sherry Stahl

Now, here’s the first #SoulH2O Devotion of 2017…

Sound The Alarm

“Blow the trumpet in Zion; sound the alarm on my holy hill.”
Joel 2:1  NIV

The week before Christmas I had a really important meeting.  While preparing documents, my computer ran out of paper an hour and a half before I had to leave.  I jumped in the car and drove to Staples.

Next, I bolted out of the car and was rushing into the store when I was stopped dead in my tracks.  As soon as I opened the double doors I could hear the security alarm going off.  Sirens were blaring.  My heart sank as I thought I would have to go to another store and didn’t have time but I looked in and saw people in line at check out.  I walked forward and the automatic doors opened.  I saw the manager walking by and she didn’t say anything.  The clerk was running people’s purchases through the register so I just kept on walking to the paper aisle.

The sound was almost deafening, yet no one was making any reaction to the alarm.  They were all carrying on like normal, like they didn’t even hear it.  As I walked towards the register to pay, the alarms turned off.  Still, no one in line with me reacted so I didn’t say anything.  It was so weird.

I felt like I was in an episode of The Twilight Zone!

As I was walking around the store this verse in Joel kept ‘sounding off’ in my head. Sadly, too often God is trying to get the world’s attention and they don’t even hear it.  They keep on living, oblivious to the signs of the times, the messengers, or the messages He sends.

Joel wrote these words after God gave him a prophetic vision to share with the people.  I didn’t have a vision, but I know God had me walk in the store at just that time to sound the alarm through my writing.

I believe at the beginning of 2017 God is blowing a trumpet and we need to be alert to His message.

The end of Joel 2:1 says 
“Let all who live in the land tremble for the day of the LORD is coming.  
      It is close at hand”.


This isn’t a doomsday post heralding the end, but it is an alarm for us to listen up.  Joel warned the people of God’s coming judgement for their sin but, like God so often offers in His Word, there was a caveat to the judgment.

“Rend your heart and not your garments.  Return to the LORD your God, 
for he is gracious and compassionate, slow to anger and abounding in love, 
and he relents from sending calamity.”  (Joel 2:13).


God isn’t some angry deity waiting to throw fireballs on the earth.  His desire is to show us grace, love and compassion.  Joel 2:26 tells how God will restore what the enemy has stolen away, if we turn our hearts to Him.

Your choices; how you act and react in this new year, will decide the course for your life.  May you choose the life God has destined for you and walk in His blessings this year!


Father…I thank You for Your warnings, they show You care for me.  Let my ears be open to hear them.  This year, I choose to turn my heart and my life over to You so I will see Your restoration in areas where the enemy has stolen away!  May I walk in Your grace, love and compassion; showing it to the world.  In Jesus Name…Amen

[tweetthis]I believe at the beginning of 2017 God is blowing a trumpet …be alert to His message. [/tweetthis]

Post in the Comment Section below and bolster the faith of someone else!


MONDAY Monday Meditations – Laura J. Davis,
TUESDAY Cheerleaders of Faith #RARaLinkup – Kelly Balarie,
WEDNESDAY Coffee For Your Heart – Holley Gerth,
THURSDAY Heart Encouragement Thursday – Crystal Storms,
FRIDAY Dance With Jesus Linkup – Susan B. Mead, Grace and Truth Linkup – Arabah Joy, Counting My Blessings – Deb Wolf, Fresh Market Friday – Crystal Twaddell

Sherry Stahl