Blessed be the Lord, who daily loadeth us with benefits, even the God of our salvation. Psalm 68:19
When I hear those words, I immediately conjure up images of turkeys, pies, and potatoes. I wish my first thoughts were thankful ones. Instead, it's all about the food. It's about food just as Christmas is about presents.
One year I tried to buck the system. I was in my late college years, very idealistic and trying to change the world. I arrived home for Thanksgiving break with a radical offer.
"How about we fast on Thanksgiving day and send the money we would have spent to a missions work?" I eagerly spouted.
Silence. A few eyes rolled.
It was too much. I can't remember the outcome of the day. I believe we skipped breakfast...but we certainly didn't spend the day hungry. I understand now, everyone anticipated the traditional meal and my crazy idea a few days before the big holiday was too much.
Over a decade later, I wish I could do something to make our Thanksgiving day more than a blur of baking and pigging out. The gorging is the appropriate grand opening for the Christmas season, which has become it's own gorging of sorts. Tragedy.
Raising five children has made the burden weigh heavily on my heart. I grasp at any idea to make our holidays more...serene...family focused...Christ-centered.
I would love your ideas--what does your family do to make Thanksgiving special?
Here's one idea I got from church last night, I believe it's a perfect opener to Advent:
A week of Thanksgiving
Read the book of Colossians (Everett gasped when we told him to read an ENTIRE book of the Bible, but don't fret, it's only four chapters!). Colossians has at least one reference to thankfulness in each chapter. Jot down thoughts that relate to thankfulness. Pay close attention to:
1:3 We give thanks to God and the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, praying always for you,
1:12 Giving thanks unto the Father, which hath made us meet to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in light
2:7 Rooted and built up in him, and stablished in the faith, as ye have been taught, abounding therein with thanksgiving
3:15 And let the peace of God rule in your hearts, to the which also ye are called in one body; and be ye thankful.
4:2 Continue in prayer, and watch in the same with thanksgiving