Joel 2:25 ESV

At the beginning of the book of Joel, we’re introduced to a scene of destruction. The prophet Joel writes that ‘the fields are ruined, the ground is dried up; the grain is destroyed’ (Joel 1:10 NIV). He goes as far as to say that ‘surely the people’s joy is withered away’ (v.12 NIV). One of the factors that contributed to this situation was a plague of locusts. We’re told: ‘What the locust swarm has left the great locusts have eaten; what the great locusts have left the young locusts have eaten; what the young locusts have left other locusts have eaten’ (v.4 NIV). We can sometimes feel that we’re in a similar sort of situation. We probably haven’t experienced the devastation from a literal plague of locusts, but we can feel that we’ve been under attack from other things. Our lives can sometimes appear to be falling apart. Things that we value are destroyed. Maybe our relationships break down, someone we love dies, our reputation is damaged by what other people say about us, we experience failure or fear, and we feel a million miles from God. When things like this happen, it wouldn’t be surprising if our joy started to wither away too. But there is hope. God made a promise: ‘I will restore to you the years that the swarming locust has eaten.’ We’ll experience God’s blessings and goodness again. He can take the pieces of our lives and make something good from them. While He doesn’t promise that the locusts will never attack again, He does promise to repair and restore. So when we’re feeling the attack of the ‘locusts’, let’s not allow our hope to be withered but instead remember God’s amazing promise.