Following a devastating locust invasion – unprecedented in its scope of damage – God instructed Joel to use the locusts as a living illustration of the judgment to come on Judah if they did not repent of their luke-warm, indifferent approach to God.
In Joel 2:25, God says to Judah,
“I will restore to you the years the locusts have eaten.”
This is an extraordinary statement because God doesn’t say he’ll restore “stuff”, but “years”.
Can God actually restore joy to our lives that pain and heartache have stolen from us over time? What about the broken-hearted spouse who’s just ended a 20 year marriage? Or, the guilt-ridden addict who, after spending most of their adult life in chemical bondage, has finally decided to get clean? Or, the grieving family whose son took his own life after losing his battle with depression?
Can God “restore” the “life” we’ve lost.
God says, emphatically, “I not only can – I will.”
From the moment we put our trust and faith in Christ, the “restoration” is put into motion.
Some of us see tangible evidence of “restoration” here on planet earth. (Job’s livestock and wealth were restored to him twofold on earth.) Others of us won’t see restoration until we leave this planet. (Job’s children who were lost in 1:18-19 were restored to him in heaven.) But the promise of restoration remains – and is in effect.
Because of the Cross and the Empty Tomb, our redemption and restoration is now possible. The risen Jesus Christ – restored to glory after being broken for us on the cross – was our preview of the restoration to come.