In every great story, there are periods of pain and difficulty, trial and testing. But the best stories- the ones that best reflect the True Story of the World- don’t end there. The pain is not wasted, the trials are never pointless. Put more simply, after every dark night, there is always, always a dawn.
The book of Joel begins with harsh imagery- the coming of locusts to strip the land bare, leaving nothing in their wake. Cataclysmic and devastating– and another warning to turn our hearts to God, rather than our false idols, for He is the true Giver of all good things. But then there’s this great promise (Joel 2:25) “I will repay you for the years the locusts have eaten”. Such hope! There will come a day when all that is wrong will be made right. When all the pain will be healed and all that was lost will be restored.
Jesus, the true Light who has come into our world, who is the picture– and down-payment– of what resurrection will be, will return. He will make all things new. And so this Advent season, as we wait to remember that first Coming, we look forward with longing and hope and joyful anticipation for the Second Advent. Yes, Jesus! Come soon!