Well, it’s that time of year again – time to stuff our westernized bodies and souls with turkey, football, parades, and
pumpkin sweet potato pie (that’s my Thanksgiving pie of choice). Thanksgiving here in the United States originated from a mix of Native American and European traditions of festivals and feasts that were held to give thanks and to rejoice together after much hard work at the end of a good harvest. How often do we plant ourselves in front of the TV or busy ourselves in the kitchen with our aprons covered in today’s big meal and completely bypass what the holiday was originally meant for? How many times do we look at Thanksgiving as “the day before Black Friday”? How selfish are we?
I truly believe we should live a life of gratitude on a daily basis, but Thanksgiving is a day that is set aside for that purpose…the least we can do is take time out of our busy holiday and give thanks to the One who has provided. Even if we feel like this has not been a good year, even if we feel like our world is crumbling around us – out of work, failing marriage, a terminally ill family member, flat broke – whatever the case may be, it all has to be put into prospective. If we look around outside our own misfortunes and into lives of people in third-world countries or even sometimes into our neighbor’s home, we’ll soon find many reasons for which we can and should be thankful. However, the fact that God is still God the Almighty is reason enough to praise Him and be thankful. He tells us in His Word to “give thanks always and for everything” (Eph. 5:20) and to “give thanks in all circumstances” (1 Thess. 518), not just when things are good but in all things. It is God’s will for us.
As a tool for our family to remember to be thankful, we put up this Thankful Tree.
As something we’re grateful for comes to mind, we simply jot it on a leaf and add it to the tree.
I’m sure it will be overflowing with leaves by the time we switch it over to our Jesse Tree in December.
With that said, today I’m picking up where I left off with my weekly list of gratitudes:
62. your unfailing love, compassion, and overwhelming peace I am seeing through a hurting friend…your faithfulness never ceases to amaze me
63. for the summer harvest that provides for us all winter long
64. for our fall crops we are picking fresh now – the turnips and collards…
65. and the heads of cabbage and broccoli that are starting to take form
66. our health
67. udders starting to fill…signs of new life right around the corner
68. and a handy husband who can fix and build almost anything
69. holidays spent with extended family….and new babies
70. gaining knowledge as well as a harvest through a greenhouse
72. for you, my family and friends who read this
73. and once again, for Jesus.
Came across this prayer today from Elisabeth Elliot’s Keep a Quiet Heart, and it is my prayer today:
“Lord, we give You thanks for all that You in Your mercy have given us to be and to do and to have. Deliver us, Lord, from all greed to be and to do and to have anything not in accord with Your holy purposes. Teach us to rest quietly in Your promise to supply, recognizing that if we don’t have it we don’t need it. Teach us to desire Your will – nothing more, nothing less, and nothing else. For Jesus’ sake. Amen.”
Happy Thanksgiving and many blessings to you!
– from the Beard Family