This week seems to be going downhill at breakneck speed. Today, we are confronted by a plague of locusts, which Joel describes as an invading army. The consequence of this swarm is crop failure, which for pre-industrial societies was devastating. The whole gamut of society is touched by this crisis, from the drunkard to the priest. This is not the stuff to read with our breakfast coffee.
But hope is offered at the very end of the text. “Sanctify a fast, call a solemn assembly. Gather?to the house of the Lord your God, and cry out to the Lord.” The people knew what to do, to whom to turn when things were going badly. They knew that God would hear and act. Do we?
Yes, I think we do. When major calamities strike, Sunday attendance spikes, prayer meetings proliferate, Bibles fly off the shelves. And while some might lament the fickleness of a people who forget God in good times and flock to God in bad times, it does reveal that trust in God is still within us. And that is good news.
Lord, help us trust in you in bad and good times. Amen. — DAB