It’s time once again for turkey, dressing, and pumpkin pies. For football games, falling leaves, and your uncle falling asleep in the recliner. For family gatherings, long drives, and Black Friday sales. Few things conjure up memories of comfort and the blessings of family quite like Thanksgiving. As far back as I can remember, my family has always had a tradition that each person must take their turn saying one thing for which they are thankful before we pray and dig in. The choices for our responses are varied, because the things for which we are thankful are abundant. That’s usually the case when you serve the God of grace and goodness.
While it always seems easy to be thankful this time of year, I have to wonder if we carry that same thankfulness with us throughout the rest of the year. I would venture to guess that most of us struggle with thanksgiving in times where we are aren’t gathered around family and large amounts of food, or the ones that don’t have the very word written on our calendars.
Being truly thankful to God is obviously something that we should be at all times of the year, every day in fact. “In everything give thanks; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.” (I Thessalonians 5:18). We can all list things for which we are thankful: our families, our jobs, our homes, etc. How many of us show thankfulness to God for these things besides this time of year? Furthermore, when was the last time you showed God how thankful you are for your spiritual blessings? Paul tells us in Ephesians 1:3, “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ.”
So whether the Cowboys lose the game, or whether grandma burns the turkey, or whatever other earthly circumstance in life, we always have reason to give thanks to God, the One who gives generously and promises us a home in heaven. I imagine the spread there will be a little bigger, too. Happy Thanksgiving!