Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Thanksgiving Is

When I was growing up, Thanksgiving was that quiet go-to-grandmas-eat-lots-of-food-and-be-bored-the-rest-of-the-day holiday.  Compared to Christmas, Thanksgiving was just a halfhearted warm up act.  Sure, it was nice to be with family and share a big, hearty meal, but it was not a big deal to me.

Over the years, my perspective has changed.  We first started hosting Thanksgiving nine years ago.  We had just bought our house that summer and I said offhandedly that it would be great to host a holiday, but not this year because it was just too soon.  We hosted anyway – hectic, learning, and chaotic, but I’m glad we did it.  

The next year, I was pregnant with our first child.  The idea of being thankful seemed so important, so integral to how life should be that I was grateful that this was our holiday to host.  I made handmade card invitations, started to buy Thanksgiving décor, looked for ways to make this OUR holiday.  We started speaking out our thankfulness before the prayer and I was brought to tears nearly every time.  

Each year that passes, I am overwhelmed by all that I have to be thankful for.  It seems to me that over time this holiday – Thanksgiving – is what should matter most.  

Thanksgiving is:

  • Friends and family together sharing and loving each other – even when we don’t understand or like each other all the time.
  • Reminiscing, laughing, storytelling, traditions.
  • Food, warmth, pumpkins, turkey, and stuffing.
  • Brokenness…realizing that all we have – life, health, shelter, food, breath is a gift from God – grace for this moment – undeserved favor.

How can we not bow before God and offer thanks for each moment?  How can we forget that each moment of life is a gift?  I don’t live this thankfulness as I should – today being a prime example of my irritation and anger and shaking of my fist at all that annoys and inconveniences me – even the people that should matter the most. 

So come Thanksgiving, come to us broken ones – so that we can weigh down time with grace and peace and a bit of joy to move us forward. 

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