Joel 2:25

I will restore to you the years
which the swarming locust has eaten,
the hopper, the destroyer, and the cutter,
my great army, which I sent among you.

We don't worry too much about locust plagues today.  But in antiquity (and in certain places today) they were a live menace.  Where they went, famine followed.  Not without reason, they were seen as a sort of destroying army and, under inspiration, Joel recognized that at least one plague of locusts had supernatural significance: it signified the judgement of God.  But if the judgement, then the mercy too. For God's judgment is always prelude to his mercy.  Joel reminds Israel of this in today's verse.  It's still true today.  God can restore years that television, or the pursuit of mammon, or self-indulgence have eaten.  Ask him to.  Then do the next practical thing.

Mark Shea


Mark P. Shea is a popular Catholic writer and speaker. The author of numerous books, his most recent work is The Work of Mercy (Servant) and The Heart of Catholic Prayer (Our Sunday Visitor). Mark contributes numerous articles to many magazines, including his popular column “Connecting the Dots” for the National Catholic Register. Mark is known nationally for his one minute “Words of Encouragement” on Catholic radio. He also maintains the Catholic and Enjoying It blog and regularly blogs for National Catholic Register. He lives in Washington state with his wife, Janet, and their four sons.

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