Posts Tagged ‘American Thanksgiving’


Happy Thanksgiving!

The Canadian autumn weekend of eating too much is upon us, and I cannot wait for the scent of roast turkey to begin wafting from my oven, complete with stuffing, candied yam, and desserts … yum … I AM thankful!

It is easy to sit around a table, full of great food and great people, and be thankful … but, “in all circumstances?”

Sometimes the table is missing loved ones, who do not live near, or who do not live here on Earth.

Sometimes the table has meager offerings.

Sometimes health is not good.

Sometimes relationships are not healthy.

Sometimes jobs are in peril … or non-existent.

Sometimes homes are lost.

Sometimes hope has faded.

Sometimes memories are gone.

Sometimes …

“give thanks in all circumstances;
for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.”
1 Thessalonians 5:18

God’s will is for us to give thanks? But … what if that which we have gives us little to be thankful for?

I cannot speak for the heart of God, nor can I speak for any other human being, but I will share with you how life changing giving thanks has been, in the heart of this mere mortal.

As I began to post about two and a half years ago, my goal was to reflect the name I chose, itsawonderfilledlife. I wanted to not stop looking at life with the awe and wonder of a child. I wanted to never allow life to so jade me that I ceased to be amazed at just how blessed I am.

And so, as I write, as I write, each and every day, I do so with the goal of being wonder-filled in my heart.

Now, every day is not light and fluffy, and perhaps there are posts that are downright depressing … but my hope is that the focus is predominantly one of wonder.

The past three years have included some of the most heart-wrenching struggles to keep getting out of bed each day, and yet the focus of searching for wonder, has it falling at my feet each and every day …

from fog in the morning,
to an eagle’s cry,
to all of creation,
to a child’s joy,
to the note of a student,
to the message of encouragement from a friend,
to the right song on the radio at just the right time,
to the whisper of God, “I love you, with an everlasting love,”
to the smell of fresh brewed coffee,
to the blessing of great parents,
to the joy of being mom to one daughter,
to the joy of being mom to another daughter,
to the joy of being mom to a son,
to the joy of being mom at all,
to the life with the man who has loved me when I do not deserve his love,
to the redemption that God offered, for all my sins.

… in ALL circumstance?

You bet!

Because there is always something to be thankful for! Always.

“Come, ye thankful people, come, raise the song of harvest home;
All is safely gathered in, ere the winter storms begin.
God our Maker doth provide for our wants to be supplied;
Come to God’s own temple, come, raise the song of harvest home.”

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This coming Friday is Black Friday.

For those of us who are not familiar with this annual, largely American (although spreading all over North America) tradition of Black Friday, it is the Friday following American thanksgiving, which signifies the start of the holiday shopping season. Retailers have traditionally opened their doors earlier than normal, and had specials to attract shoppers to set their alarm clocks for ungodly hours.

I admit, I have never gone shopping on Black Friday, although I have considered it a time or two, but the memories of the news stories of years past has always kept me safe at home.

I was recently speaking with an employee of a large department store about this infamous day. She is a woman working a low paying, thankless job, in order to pay her bills and support her

family. She was a delightful woman, who would appear to work hard, and treat other people well. As we talked it was obvious that she was certainly not excited by the idea that she would need to return to work, on her holiday planned with family, hours earlier than one year ago. For she, and many like her, the day set aside for giving thanks will instead be spent serving many people who walk with an air of expectation and entitlement.

Then she told me a story from the year before. An older woman was waiting patiently in line for a store employee to open up an electronics wall. When the door opened, the crowd surged forward, like starving dogs before a dead carcass, hoping to find a morsel of meat left on the bones. The older lady fell to her knees, and the crowd around her was so ravenous for whatever lifeless thing they were pursuing that they did not even notice her fall. Thankfully, a pair of store staff did notice, and were able to lock up the wall and open the eyes of the crowd to the lady who had fallen.

The comment of the store employee has stuck with me, “people are becoming like animals! They did not care or even notice this poor woman … they could have trampled her to death!”

Indeed, our human race is losing the breath of life that was given to us at the beginning of time, the breath of life that we should be so thankful for. It makes me ask, as was asked by God, in the middle of a valley full of very dry bones, in Ezekiel 37, “son of man, can these bones live?”” I too would respond, “Sovereign Lord, you alone know.”

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