Today is Thanksgiving Day here in the United States. Usually the day is marked by having a big dinner with family and friends and giving at least token thankful recognition of the many things we have. Football games usually feature in the day too as well as studying the ads for all the stores to see which one is opening at what insane hour to kick-start the Christmas shopping season.
This morning, in the paper in the Mutts comic strip there was a quotation I really liked. “Thanksgiving, after all, is a word of action.” This was attributed to W. J. Cameron. I don’t know this author but I like this statement. Giving thanks needs to be spoken and acted upon. All it takes to be thankful is to look around. If you have a roof over your head, give thanks. If you have clothes to wear, even if they are out of style, give thanks. If you have food to eat, give thanks. If you have your health, give thanks. If you have those who love you, give thanks.
My church had a special Thanksgiving service on Tuesday evening. Four members of the congregation spoke. One, a man about 40 I’d guess, started his talk by reading a long list of things for which to be thankful. Included on the list was soft toilet paper. Although this got a laugh by most members, I remembered needing to use rough, crepe paper style paper when I traveled in Poland so, yes, today I give thanks for soft toilet tissue.
Another speaker was a young mother. She and her husband lost their first child, a boy, this year just 20 hours after his birth. Yet she stood there and said that many women miscarry their babies and never know the baby or get to hold it. She was thankful that she got to meet her baby, Micah, and got to hold him, kiss his cheeks and tell him how much she loved him, and take pictures of him so she’d never forget him. I think it’s a rare woman who can give thanks in that situation.
Because of work situations in my family, we had our Thanksgiving dinner last night. I’m thankful we were able to find a date when we could all be together for the meal. I’m thankful the turkey finally popped it’s button to indicate it was done. I’m thankful the meal turned out well even if I did forget to serve the cranberry sauce. I’m thankful I have a dishwasher which makes short work of cleaning up the kitchen. I’m thankful for my nephew’s wife who helped clear the table and tidied the dining room after the meal. Althought it was noisy, I’m thankful that my niece and great-nephew had such an entertaining time “playing” my piano.
I’m sure I’ll think of other things to be thankful for as I go about my day today. I plan to wrap the Christmas gifts I’ve already purchased. I’m thankful I was able to buy them. I’ll spend some time putting up Christmas decorations and be thankful for the Greatest Gift which was given to us in Bethlehem all those years ago. I’ll get out the Christmas card list and be thankful I have friends to send cards.
How will you be spending this Thanksgiving Day? What are you thankful for?