Thanksgiving for Locusts
It’s Thanksgiving week! I’m so glad. This holiday is one of the only redeeming qualities of November: it may be my birthday month, but there’s no denying its gray gloominess and dank darkness. So the warmth of Thanksgiving, with the traditional feast and family gathering, brightens the colorless close of Fall.
Israel was experiencing a catastrophic locust invasion. They would come in and eat everything and leave and then do it again. If you’ve read the Little House books, you know how devastating this is to farmers and communities. The locusts fly in, in masses so dense they block the sun, strip everything bare, and leave a barren landscape. There is no harvest.
After all this heartbreak, God speaks through Joel to tell the people, “I will repay you for the years the locusts have eaten.” 2:25.
The locusts have eaten some of our years, too. Maybe they are eating your year right now. It’s so hard not to lose heart when there’s loss after loss. But God is promising you that he will repay you for those lost years. The Thanksgiving Feast will come.
One thing I’m learning is that it’s important to give thanks even when the locusts come. God clearly tells us to “give thanks in all circumstances” (I Thess. 5:18), even though this is illogical, counterintuitive, seemingly ridiculous. But we don’t have to like what we are giving thanks for. Giving thanks is an action, and sometimes God asks for actions we don’t feel. He will do amazing work from our obedience and redeem the terrible circumstance we may be in.
I hope you have a joyful Thanksgiving feast. But even if the locusts are eating your year, remember that God will repay you for the years the locusts have eaten. Your Thanksgiving Feast will come.