Restoration After the Locust
“I'll make up for the years of the locust, the great locust devastation----locusts savage, locusts deadly, fierce locusts, locusts of doom, that great locust invasion I sent your way. You'll eat your fill of good food. You'll be full of praises to your God. The God who has set you back on your heels in wonder” Joel 2:25-26. (The Message).
Do you feel as if you have been stripped sometimes when you have gone through a hard struggle in life? Have you ever seen plants stripped by locust? Nothing is left. Not the leaves, not the fruit or vegetable, nothing but the stem is left. That is the way we often feel after our stripping process.
For years our family felt like that stem---stripped by our son's drug addiction, stripped of family members in tragic ways, stripped of jobs, stripped of self-reliance, pride, and so much more. Such great devastation caused great wailing in the passage in Joel and we often find ourselves in the same position, wailing for our children or things we feel we can't live without.
As I reread this passage I realized that God said He had brought the locusts to do the stripping. They had slowly but surely accomplished the work needed. Even now when something needs to be stripped from our thoughts, our attitudes, or our words He allows the locust to come and do their job. He allows the stripping to hopefully bring us to a time of repentance and restoration.
Praise God along with the stripping He gives us a promise that one day we will eat our fill again. We will sing praises to Him for the journey, for loving us enough not to leave us like we were. The Lord comes to strip us over and over to take away those things we put in place of Him, things yes, but maybe even a relationship we have made our priority over Him.
We may not understand what He is doing during the stripping process, but as we cooperate with Him in it we can look back and be grateful knowing that all things work together for good to those who are His own. We should always thank Him for loving us so much that He strips us of those things that keep us from being the best we can be.